I don't know how many different varieties of Rasams are there... we have lime Rasom, Pepper Rasam, Tomato Rasam, Green Chiily Rasam, Garlic Rasam... Okay these are the varieties I make... and I know there are still a lot of other varieties...
My favourite is Tomato Rasam...well till the day I had this. I happened to taste this by chance. This happened in Chennai once, when my lil girl was 8 months old. It was a very busy Sunday and it was almost 1'0' clock and all that I cooked was rice. I was a bundle of nerves and that time my part time helper came in. I told her... "Pls make a Rasam for me"... and she made this.. It was too good... I asked her for the recipe and she told me when she was around 18 years, she was working in a Telugu filmstar's house. There she had to make this every day!! Pepper Rasam!!!!
Pepper: 1 tbsp
Cumin: 1 tbsp
Garlic: 5-6 cloves with the cover
Coriander leaves: a handful
Tamarind: a big lime sized soaked in 1.5 cups water
Mustard: 1 tsp
Dried Red Chilly: 2
Shallots: 2 sliced
Curry Leaf: 1 sprig
Grind the pepper and cumin seeds till almost powdered.
Now add the garlic pods into it with the cover, and run the mixie for a few seconds.
Put the tomato in and run the mixie again to make it a paste.
Squeeze the tamarinds and take it out of the water.
In the tamarind water, mix in the tomato paste, coriander leaves and salt as required.
In a kadai, heat oil and splutter mustard seeds, add the shallots, curry leaves and dried red chillies.
Now pour the rasam mix to it and let it boil
In a serving dish, Pour quarter cup water and on top of that, pour the hot rasam.
Serve with Rice.