Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Bhakshala Rasam (Bobbatla Chaaru)

As much as we like bhakshalu/puran poli on festival days, what we always look forward to is the tasty rasam, called bhakshala chaaru.

Bhakshala Chaaru is prepared with drained water from boiled chana dal of bhakshalu (Bobbatlu/puran poli). This leftover, rich in taste, chana dal water is simmered with tamarind juice and jaggery. A seasoning of tadka. That’s it. Prepared in small quantity on festival days, this tasty and nutritious bhakshala rasam is to die for. Saying this is a cliche, but I miss my mother whenever I make this recipe, because she prepares the best, the tastiest rasam I have ever had.

Water Drained from Boiled Chana Dal for Bhakshalu/Puran Poli
Drained Water from Chana dal of Bhakshalu


2 cups-drained water of boiled chanadal
Half onion, thinly sliced lengthwise (Optional)
2 tablespoons of tamarind juice
2 tablespoons of jaggery - powdered
¼ tsp of red chilli powder
¼ tsp of salt, or to taste
Pinch of turmeric
1 cup of water

For popu or tadka -
1 teaspoon oil or ghee
¼ tsp of mustard seeds, cumin, hing & curry leaves


Heat one teaspoon of oil in a heavy pot to medium high. Add the mustard, cumin seeds, hing and curry leaves. When the seeds begin to pop, add thinly sliced onions and saute them for few minutes to soft. This rasam is also prepared without onions.

Add the chana dal water, tamarind juice, jaggery, red chilli powder, turmeric and salt. Add water and stir. Bring this mixture to boil. Reduce the heat and let it simmer, uncovered for about 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve hot or cold with rice.

Bhakshala Rasam/chaaru with rice
Bhakshala Rasam with Rice - a Raayalaseema Sweet and Spicy Special Chaaru.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Chana Dal, Amma & Authentic Andhra, Jaggery (Wednesday October 19, 2005 at 10:28 pm- permalink)

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6 comments for Bhakshala Rasam (Bobbatla Chaaru) »

  1. Sounds interesting. It is nice to make use of the water that would otherwise be drained off. The second photo makes it look quite thick. Do you reduce it for a long time? We make rasam with a powder. Can I add that in place of red chili powder or will the taste change significantly?

    Comment by mika — October 20, 2005 @ 10:40 am

  2. Hi Mika…Adding the turmeric and jaggery makes the rasam look yellow and thick.And also 10 to 15 minutes of simmering reduces it in volume a little bit.
    I guess you can add the rasam powder instead of red chilli powder, but you are going to get a completely,different taste. We never add rasam powder for this rasam.
    I am curious, do you also use the chanadal water for rasam/sambhar?

    Comment by Indira — October 20, 2005 @ 1:01 pm

  3. Indira- We normally do not use onion or chana dal in rasam. I use only tuvar dal.

    Comment by mika — October 20, 2005 @ 4:47 pm

  4. My mom makes this (holige saaru) whenever she makes holige (Bhakshala). It is not thick as the picture here seems to suggest and doesn’t have any onions in it.

    I am going to try your recipe out. I am always looking out for these wonderful variations on sambar and rasam!

    Thank You :)

    Comment by E Nishada — June 16, 2007 @ 12:07 pm

  5. Dear Indira,

    Obbattu is my most favourite dish. We also add a little dry ginger to the hoorana. try adding saffron next time. my variation. it tastes divine.
    for the holige saaru, I add a lttle dhania and garlic. instead of jaggery we add a ball of hoorana to the saaru. that is why it is holige saaru.

    Comment by usha — December 14, 2007 @ 6:47 am

  6. Hi Indira,

    I Love this rasam so much.
    Thanks for the receipe.
    By the way I am also from rayalaseema(Kurnool).

    Comment by Sudha — March 6, 2008 @ 4:12 am

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