Vepampoo or Dried Neem Flowers are known for their bitterness and health benefits. Neem is popularly known for its medicinal values and properties it contains and you can come across in many places in India using neem as medicine for various diseases and many other issues like stomach issues, skin problems and even to beat the devil out of you 😉 In tamil language we call it as “Vepampoo”. They are very therapeutic. Even the powder version of it is available in many stores as well as sold in Amazon online. It’s also very good for skin for clearing acne spots & Pigmentations.
(I am not a doctor or certified person, I have also read them in google and heard from doctors and i have tried them myself from my teenage and worked well for me. Also, great with scalp issue, and my mom have suggested this neem powder for skin and scalp too)
Usually we use this neem flower, especially the fresh neem flower on Tamil New Year’s day which is the first day of a fresh Tamil month. We add this with Mango pudding recipe that we make exclusively for that occasion. More about that pudding later. Now back to the details of this recipe.
This Rasam has no added dal or any other rasam powder. It’s mild and tangy as well spicy. Made differently. This is my version. you can see people making it their. I appreciate and also would want to try them. This one i have given below is the one i learnt back home , practised in family. In my mom’s they won’t add chilies. Her way of making it is very simple. Let us see how i made this.
Tamarind- 1 small lemon size
Turmeric powder-1/2 teaspoon
Asafetida powder-1/2 teaspoon
Salt- for taste
Ghee- 1/4 cup + 2 teaspoons
Dried Neem flower- 1/4 cup
Curry leaves- an arch
STEPS (WITH PICTURES)
- Soak Tamarind in warm water for 20 minutes and take the extract and keep 3 cups of it ready.
- Let’s fry the vepampoo (Neem flower) first. For that in a pan add 2 teaspoons of ghee, add the vepampoo and saute until it turns black in color as shown in the picture below.
3. Then in the same pan add 1/4 cup of ghee and add the tempering. Add 3/4 teaspoon of mustrad, 1/2 teaspoon of peppercorns, 4-5 red chilies, 1 teaspoon of cumin and then add the curry leaves. Once done, keep this aside.
4. Then in a vessel add 3 cups of tamarind water and add the diced tomatoes, 1/2 teaspoon of Asafetida powder, 1/2 teaspoon of Turmeric powder, salt for taste. Allow it to boil for 4-5 minutes.
5. Add the sauteed ingredients to the rasam. Add the fried neem flower along.
6. Mix them together and allow it to sit on medium to low flame to froth and turn off the stove.
1.If you get fresh neem flowers you can definitely use them. I always prefer dried neem flowers for rasam and kuzhambu varieties. For Mango pudding (Maanga vellapachadi) i said in the starting of the recipe i prefer fresh one’s.
2. Dried Neem Flowers can be stored in airtight container/ glass container/ ziploc. I bring my neem flowers from india. and it’s all dust free and cleaned well. Here in New jersey we rarely get Fresh Neem Flowers even in the grocery store.
3. SOme add thuvar dal too while tempering and many skip peppercorns as they dont like to taste it while consuming it. but i guess that won’t be a disturbance, at least for me as we can keep it aside. It enhances the flavor and taste when you add.
4. You can add freshly chopped coriander leaves. I didn’t add as its an option but no harm in adding it.
5. Tomatoes can be skipped. I was taught this way so i used it.
6. The fried neem flower can be added at the end while serving too. Or some add it while boiling the rasam and the rest half at the end. I added entirely while boiling for that 3 minutes.
For any doubts and queries comment down below or Wave me on my Instagram. And if you like it save it, shar eit and try it and do tag me @thehomemadecooking
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