South Indian mutton soup: A hearty and warm rainy day breakfast

Lamb soup
Photo: Shutterstock/Kingsly

Mutton soup, also known as mutton tasam or mutton elumbu soup, is a flavourful and nutritious dish that's perfect for a cozy breakfast on a rainy day. It's made with tender mutton bones and a blend of aromatic spices.

Mutton is a great source of high-quality protein, which is essential for muscle repair, growth, and overall body maintenance. Mutton bones release collagen and gelatin into the soup during cooking, which are beneficial for joint and bone health. These compounds help in maintaining strong bones and joints. The spices used in the soup, such as turmeric, black pepper, cumin, and fennel, have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that help boost the immune system and protect against infections. Ingredients like ginger and garlic are known for their digestive benefits. They help stimulate digestion, reduce bloating, and improve gut health.

The soup is hydrating and can help in recovery, especially after an illness or physical exertion, due to its high water content and the presence of electrolytes and nutrients.

500 grams mutton bones with some meat
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 green chillies, slit
1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste
A few curry leaves
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp black peppercorns
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp fennel seeds
2 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp black pepper powder
Salt to taste
2 tbsp oil or ghee
4 cups water
A handful of chopped coriander leaves for garnish
Juice of half a lemon (optional)

In a pressure cooker, heat the oil or ghee
Add cumin seeds, fennel seeds, and peppercorns
Sauté until they start to splutter
Add the chopped onions and curry leaves
Sauté until the onions turn golden brown
Add the ginger-garlic paste and sauté until the raw smell disappears
Add the chopped tomatoes and cook until they turn soft and mushy
Add the mutton bones and sauté for a few minutes until they are well coated with the spices
Add turmeric powder, coriander powder, black pepper powder, and salt, mix well
Pour in 4 cups of water and stir
Close the lid of the pressure cooker and cook on medium heat for about 6-8 whistles, or until the mutton is tender and the flavours are well combined
Once the pressure releases naturally, open the lid and check the seasoning
Adjust salt and pepper if needed
Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and a squeeze of lemon juice, if using
Serve the Mutton Soup hot, accompanied by some crusty bread or steamed rice for a hearty and warming meal on a rainy day.

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