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Showing posts with label rice varieties. Show all posts
Showing posts with label rice varieties. Show all posts

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Gutti Vankaya Biryani

Gutti Vankaya or Stuffed Brinjal is a popular Andhra delicacy that one can find in most of the South Indian restaurants. It is more commonly known as Baghara Baingan in Hyderabad. More suitable for a festive menu rather than a everyday meal, it is infused with a rich medley of flavors. Peanuts (or cashews), coconut, curry leaves, sesame seeds(optional), dried chillis and tamarind along with a host of other spices give it that tantalizing and unforgettable taste.

Giving a twist to this unique taste experience, a few restaurants in the recent times have started serving it with an aromatic Andhra style biryani. And having had occasion to sample this combination, I can vouch for it's heavenly taste. While most restaurants stick to using Basmati rice for this recipe, I prefer the small grained but equally aromatic 'Jeerakasala' or 'Jeera' rice variety.

It is one of the best one-pot meal options for those potluck occasions peppered with a generous number of 'strictly vegetarian' individuals. And it is actually quite easy and takes relatively less time to put together than a dal-roti-suzbi meal. Reason enough to make it a part of your culinary arsenal.

The small purple aubergines are generally used for making this recipe. But I used the long white ones as I had a batch that needed to be consumed before the weekend. Read on for the details -

Preparation Time - 30-40 mins

Ingredients -

For the Gutti Vankaya -

For the stuffing -

  • 2 tsp poppy seeds
  • 1/4 cup peanuts
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated coconut
  • 1 inch cinnamon
  • 1 green cardamom
  • 2-3 cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4-5 dry red chilis ( less spicy ones like byadgi )
  • 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
Others - 

  • 2 long white eggplants / 8 medium sized purple ones
  • 1 large onion ( chopped into thin long pieces )
  • 1 tsp GG paste
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • a pinch of garam masala
  • a pinch of asafoetida
  • 2-3 pinch turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/4 tsp cumin seeds
  • a lemon sized ball of tamarind
  • salt to taste
  • oil for shallow frying

For the Biryani -

  • 2 cups Jeera ( jeerakasala ) rice 
  • 2 tbsp chopped mint leaves
  • 2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves
  • 1 small onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 green cardamom
  • 2 inch long cinnamon
  • 3-4 cloves
  • 6-7 black peppercorns
  • 2 pinch shahjeera
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tsp ghee
  • salt to taste

Preparation - Soak the tamarind in 1/2 cup hot water. Squeeze the juice and discard the pulp.

Chop the white eggplants into 3 inch long pieces. Then put a 'X' shaped cut on each piece. Make sure that the cut is only till 3/4 of the length and not more. Soak the pieces in warm water to which a little turmeric has been added.

Cook the rice using the open pan method. It should be cooked yet firm to touch.

Cooking - Heat a thick bottomed pan. Add the peanuts and red chilis. Once peanuts start popping, add the cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, coriander seeds, and bay leaf. Once they gets fragrant, add poppy seeds. These start spluttering at once.

Immediately add the coconut to the same pan. Fry for 30-45 seconds and switch off.

Allow it to cool down and then grind into a coarse paste. Stuff this paste into the slits made on the aubergine pieces.

Heat a wok. Add the oil. Throw in the curry leaves, asafoetida, mustard seeds and cumin seeds.

Once they get popping, add chopped onions. Once onion is translucent, add GG paste. Fry for 2-3 mins before adding the turmeric, chilli powder, coriander powder and garam masala. Fry for another minute.

Gently put the stuffed eggplants into the wok. Sprinkle some salt over them. Fry gently till the skin turns brown.

Add about 1 cup water and the remaining stuffing to the wok. Adjust the salt. Bring to a gentle boil and cover with a lid. Let it simmer for 5-6 mins or till the aubergine in cooked.

Add the tamarind. Simmer for 5 mins or till it reaches the desired consistency. Remove from the flame.

Heat the ghee in a wide pan. Add the onions, mint leaves and coriander leaves. Fry till the onion turns translucent. Add all the spices and fry till fragrant.

Finally add the rice along with a little salt and sprinkle a bit water. Toss gently. Cover with a lid and remove from the flame. Let it stand for 10 mins.

Serve the Gutti Vankaya on a bed of the fragrant biryani rice.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Kamal Kakdi (Lotus Root) Biryani

Yes, it is yet another Lotus root recipe on my blog. Can't seem to get rid of my fascination with this exotic and yummy vegetable. So, I keep finding new ways to add it to the everyday menu. And this is just another everyday recipe with the delicious crunch of lotus root.

Biryani or one pot meals are a staple when I end up cooking just for myself. It is much more than plain coincidence when you find more than twenty finger-licking varieties ( including veg and non-veg ) of biryani on my blog. This is yet another addition to the list. I have kept it really light considering that it is something that one can serve as an regular meal (instead of dal-roti/chawal) or even pack some in the lunchbox. All it takes is some raita and a salad to make it a complete meal.

Read on for the recipe -

Preparation Time - 25 mins

Ingredients - 

  • 2 cups Basmati rice
  • 100 gm lotus root 
  • 1/3 cup shelled green peas
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 1/2 tsp GG paste
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 1 large tomato (freshly pureed)
  • 1 tsp chopped mint leaves
  • 4 tsp chopped coriander leaves
  • 2 green chilis ( slit lengthwise )
  • a few strands of mace
  • 3-4 cloves
  • 1 inch cinnamon
  • 3 green cardamon
  • 5-6 peppercorns
  • 2 tsp poppy paste
  • 1 tsp ghee
  • 3 tsp oil
  • salt to taste

Preparation - Chop the onion into thin long slices.

Wash and soak the rice for 1-2 hours.

Cooking - Peel and slice the lotus root. Soak in warm water for 10 mins and rub them gently to dislodge any mud sticking to the pores. Once cleaned put them in fresh water till required.

Heat 2 1/2 tsp oil in a wok. Add the onions and fry till light brown.

Add the GG paste and fry till raw smell goes away. Add the tomato puree and fry till oil starts to separate out.

Add the poppy seeds paste along with turmeric, chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and garam masala. Fry for 1 minute.

Add the lotus root and green peas. Stir fry for 3-4 minutes.

Add the soaked rice along with the chopped mint, coriander leaves and green chili. Fry till the leaves wilt up a bit. 

Add 1 1/3 cups water. Add salt to taste. Finally drop in the whole spices, nutmeg powder and the remaining ghee.

Cook on a medium low flame for 1 whistle (approx 12-14 mins). Remove and keep aside for 15-20 mins. 

Open the lid and fluff the rice grains with a fork.

Serve hot with raita.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Paneer Tawa Pulao ( Lunchbox special )

I love making various kinds of rice dishes for my kid. They are super easy to make and very much filling. Adding veggies, eggs, paneer, beans or even chicken boosts the overall nutritional profile of the dish. Plus there is the taste factor which is the ultimate clincher !

Tawa rice is a just another kind of pulao which is cooked on a shallow vessel which allows each grain/vegetable to get coated with the oil/ghee/butter and gives it a slightly burnt/smokey (depends on how long you prefer to cook) flavor .

This time I made Tawa pulao with some leftover paneer cubes and veggies. Used very less spices as per my kid's request so you will need to add more as per your taste. Read on for the recipe -

Preparation Time - 10 mins

Ingredients -

  • 1 1/2 cups cooked Jeera rice 
  • 100 gm paneer (cut into small cubes )
  • 1/3 cup green peas
  • 1/4 cup chopped carrots
  • 1/2 of an onion (chopped into small pieces)
  • 1/2 tsp finely chopped garlic
  • 1 inch long cinnamon
  • 2-3 cloves
  • 1 green cardamom
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 red chilli whole ( less spicy )
  • a pinch of garam masala
  • 1 tsp ghee
  • 1 tsp butter
  • salt to taste
  • cilantro for garnishing

Preparation - Put the paneer cubes into a bowl of warm water to which you have added sufficient salt. Let it soak for 5-6 mins.

Cooking - Heat the ghee in a skillet. Add the paneer cubes (drained on a kitchen towel) and fry on low heat to a golden brown. Remove and keep aside.

Add the whole spices and fry till fragrant. Now add the garlic and fry to a light brown. 

The onions go in next. They need to be fried till translucent .

Put in the veggies, sprinkle a bit of salt and turn up the flame a bit. Sprinkle water at regular intervals and let the veggie cook in the steam and brown up a bit at the same time.

The rice goes in at last along with the paneer cubes. Season with salt and garam masala. Turn up the flame as you toss the ingredients to distribute the flavour evenly. Garnish with chopped cilantro and remove from the flame.

Serve warm/hot with some kachumbar or even pickle.

Note - Have used a steel tiffinbox for the presentation to create an awareness about the need to ditch plastic. It is not only harmful for the environment but the chemicals leached when we put hot food in plastic containers are carcinogenic in nature. Let us join hands and make a pledge to reduce the use of plastic with this post !

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Chaak Hao Tann ( Or my version of the Black Rice Pancakes from North-East )

A feeling of 'deja vu' overcame me when I first stumbled upon this recipe on the internet. Was it because of an uncanny resemblance to the Arissa pitha? Or was it something else that triggered that sensation ? I am still not very sure apart from the fact that these pancakes had a very solid first impression on me. And that new-found love further intensified when I bit into them for the first time. Of course I tweaked the recipe a little bit keeping my taste buds in mind, but still the results were sensational. For now, I claim to have become a black-rice convert !!

Chak Hao or black rice is a aromatic rice variety that is native to Manipur ( or maybe small pockets in the entire north-east region but I am not too sure of that ). So special is this variety that an Emperor in China had banned the cultivation of this rice for the masses. Hence it came to be known as the 'Forbidden Rice'. This variety of rice contains gluten and hence people with Celiac diseae should not consume it. But for others, this the best variety of rice for a number of reasons.

Black rice has a very high proportion of antioxidants which is crucial to the prevention of cancer and Alzheimer's . Its high anthocyanin content is very much capable of lowering the risk of heart attacks and controlling high cholesterol levels. Plus it is grown organically which results in higher nutrient value and zero exposure to chemicals.

Read on for the recipe ( Sourced from HERE ) -

Preparation Time - 30 mins

Ingredients -

  • 1 cup Black rice
  • 1/2 cup Atta (flour)
  • 3 tbsp powdered jaggery
  • 1 tsp fennel (coarsely powdered)
  • 2 tsp ghee

Preparation - Wash and soak the black rice overnight. Drain the water and transfer to a grinder jar.

Grind the rice into a smooth paste. (If it feels dry, use some the water that we had drained earlier)

Add the powdered jaggery and grind again.

Transfer the batter into a large mixing bowl. Add 1/2 cup flour and the powdered fennel seeds.

Mix everything to get a firm dough. If it feels wet or stick, add a little more flour to make it firm.

Divide the dough into 8 equal portions.

Rub a little ghee on the hands and roll each portion into a ball. Then flatten it into a disc of about 4 mm thickness.

Cooking - Heat a skillet or tawa. Grease with a little ghee.

Place the discs on the skillet and drizzle more ghee on the sides.

Cook on low flame till one side is done. Then flip it over and add a little more ghee. Both surfaces should get a layer of crispness while the center should remain moist. Remove and keep aside.

Allow it to cool down before serving.

Should stay fresh for 3-4 days in the fridge ( not tested yet as mine got over on the same day ).

Friday, July 1, 2016

Riiz Bi Sh'arieh ( A Lebanese Rice Delight )

While breads are the Middle eastern staple, they do possess quite a variety of rice dishes in their repertoire. I have already blogged about the Moudardara which is a kind of Lebanese khichidi. What strikes me about these rice varieties is the fact that they are so frugal with hardly a handful of ingredients and yet turn out to be amazingly flavorsome. It is the perfect accompaniment with their rich meat and vegetable gravies.

As I focus my attention on the Lebanese platter, I realize that there is lot that is yet to be explored. While the world drools over sinful desserts like Baklava, Basbousa and Kunafeh, the everyday dishes from the region are quite healthy. There is a heavy dependence on  garlic, olive oil and a handful of aromatic seasoning to prepare these dishes which can definitely be termed heart-healthy.

Today's recipe is a simple 'Riiz Bi Sh'arieh' which is a mix of long grained rice and fine noodles cooked together with only butter/olive oil used for the seasoning. While it is very easy to prepare, we need to note that the noodles need to be roasted to just that right shade of brown without ever burning it ( personally I don't mind leaving it a golden brown rather than taking a with risk burning it ). It can be garnished with handful of pine nuts and a dash of pepper to add a festive touch but I am definitely sticking to the plain version.

Read on for the recipe -

Preparation Time - 15 mins ( 30 mins standby )

Ingredients -
  • 1 cup long grained Basmati
  • 1/2 cup thin vermicelli ( seviyan )
  • 3 tsp olive oil ( You can use butter but olive oil is healthier )
  • salt to taste
  • 2 cups water

Preparation - Wash the rice and soak it in water for half an hour. Drain and keep aside.

Cooking - Heat the olive oil in a deep pan. Once it is fragrant, add the vermicelli and roast on a low flame till it turns a rich brown.

Add the rice along with 2 cups water and salt.

Cook covered for 12-15 mins ( or the time specified on the rice packet ).

Remove from flame and let it stand covered for 10 mins. Use a fork to fluff it up.

Serve with a meat or vegetable gravy or even with a lentil curry of your choice.

Or even with some fried prawns.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Cranberry and Mango Pilaf ( Back to school Collab )

Ahh. Finally the schools are re-opening after the much needed summer break. As much as it brings relief to the aggrieved mommies like me, planning for the tiffin/lunch box becomes a major headache. One has to ensure things like nutritional value, individual preferences and even variety to ensure that the neatly packed labor of one's love does not return home untouched or half-eaten.

With most of the schools having two recess breaks (usually from standard 1) these days, it is important to plan the boxes in such a way that it includes all the five nutrient groups, i.e., carbs, protein, dairy, fruit and veggies ! For example if one of the boxes contain a whole grain sandwich with a spicy chickpeas and vegetables filling, the other box can have a stuffed paratha or any kind of wrap with yogurt/hung curd and fruits. For a typical Indian variant, one can try a vegetable upma / idli and vegetable chutney for the first box and a simple rice dish with a fruity raita/paneer and vegetables curry for the second box. One can create many such permutations and combinations which not only add variety to the lunchbox menu but also make it possible to provide wholesome and balanced diet to the growing kids. And thankfully, quite a few schools, with the help of nutritional experts, have started sending out circulars as to what should be there in the kid's lunchbox. A different menu for each day to expose the kids to a variety of edibles. I find it to be a great initiative because when all the kids start to carry wholesome foodstuff in their boxes, the demand for junk food automatically dies down.

With my kid having a distinct preference for all things sweet and also a little bit tangy, I often make a sweet fruit pulao for his lunchbox. I complement it with a veggies fry which works quite well for him. But for kids who like yogurt/paneer, a simple Boondi raita or a semi dry Paneer curry can also be packed along with the pulao. For my kid, I prefer to use the small grained fragrant rice as it is easier for him to swallow. For that matter, do you know any kid who chews up properly ? Huh huh. But for grown ups, this recipe goes great with the long grained Basmati brown rice !

Read on for the recipe -
[ And do remember to scroll down to the bottom of this post to check the collaboration recipes with Saswati 's Delish Potpourri and Parinaaz's A Dollop of That ]

Preparation Tim - 15 mins

Ingredients - 

  • 1 cup rice ( I used fine grade jeera rice or Gobindo bhog )
  • 2-3 cloves
  • 2 inch cinnamon
  • 2 green cardamom
  • 1-2 star anise
  • 2 dry red chili ( very mild heat )
  • 1 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp ghee 
  • salt to taste
  • a pinch of saffron ( soaked in 2 tsp milk )
  • a handful of dried cranberries
  • 2/3 cup ripe mango (chopped into small cubes)

Preparation - Wash and clean the rice. Drain the water. Add turmeric powder and mix evenly. Let it air dry for 1-2 hours.

Cooking - Heat the ghee in a cooker. Add all the whole spices and stir fry till fragrant.

Add the rice and fry for 2-3 mins till all the grains are coated with ghee. Finally add 2 cups water, sugar, salt, chopped cranberries and the soaked saffron strands.

Close lid and cook for 1-2 whistles ( about 12-14 mins ). Allow steam to escape before removing the lid.

Stir in the mangoes and let it stand covered for 5 mins for the flavor to get imbibed.

Pack into the lunchbox along with a raita or a semi dry curry of your kid's choice.

For more such delicious recipes, check out these blogs !!

Check out Saswati' blog 'Delish Potpourri' for a yummy Peanut Butter Chocolate Trial mix Granola Bars. recipe

Image courtesy : Delishpotpourri.com

and Parinaaz's blog ' A Dollop of That ' for some lip-smacking Ragi Banana Pancakes  .

That certainly takes care of the Kiddo's snack box. What say !!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Moudardara ( The Lebanese version of Khichdi )

I love rice varieties and when I chanced upon this amazing recipe on the show Vickypedia hosted on Living Foodz channel, I knew that I just had to give it a try ! And while it took time and patience to ready this khichdi, it turned out to be one sparkler of a dish. The richness of the caramelized onions, the aroma of Basmati rice, the luxurious fragrance of saffron coupled with the nutrition from a medley of pulses make it a wholesome choice for one pot meals !

One word about the texture though. As Moudardara essentially means scattered, it is more like a biryani rather than being mushy like a khichidi. So, do not go overboard with the water and the stirring. Remember that we an always add a little bit of moisture whenever needed.

Read on for the recipe -

Preparation Time - 40-45 mins

Ingredients -
  • 1 1/2 cup basmati rice
  • 1 1/2 cup mixed lentils ( I used kidney beans, red lentils and horsegram )
  • 2 medium sized onions (sliced finely)
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp peppercorn
  • 1/2 tsp all spice powder
  • 2 tbsp + 2 tsp EVOO
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 pinch saffron

Preparation - Wash and soak the lentils overnight.

Crush the cumin and peppercorn into a coarse mix. Soak the saffron in the warm milk.

Cooking - Cook the lentils in a pressure cooker for 2 whistles. They should be just cooked and firm to touch. Drain the excess water but do not throw it away.

Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan. Add the onions and fry on low heat till they turn brown. Remove half of these onions from wok and keep aside.

Add the washed rice, cooked lentils, crushed spices, all spice and salt to the same wok. Mix together and cook for 2-3 mins till the rice grains are well coated with oil.

Add the drained water from the lentils and some more such that it just stands a few millimeters above the rice.

Bring to a boil and then let it simmer while covered till rice is almost done. Stir gently once or twice during the cooking.

Add the saffron along with the milk. Cook till the excess moisture disappears.

Mix in the remaining caramelized onions.

Serve with plain yogurt or a raita.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Mango Ginger Puliogare

Mango ginger is not a very common spice and quite a few folks would have never come across it. Belonging to the ginger family and possessing a smell that mimics mangoes, it is usually added in chutneys and some pickles too. And in Odisha, I have seen people frying it up and adding it to farsan, chat, dal, etc. I feel that it does lend a special flavour to any dish.

However when I was making Pulihora or Puliogare yesterday, I realized that I was out of the spice powder. There was no time to go to a shop or make a batch myself at home, so I made a rather simple recipe by adding mango ginger instead of any spice. Of course, I put in the usual tempering but nothing else. And my family was blown away with the result. Even my three year old loved it.

Read on for the recipe -

Preparation Time - 20 mins

Ingredients -

  • 1  1/2 cup cooked rice
  • 1 1/2 tsp mango ginger
  • 1 tsp tamarind juice (adjust as per taste)
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1/3 tsp mustard seeds
  • 4-5 fenugreek seeds
  • a pinch of asafoetida
  • 2-3 dry red chilis (byadgi)
  • a handful of peanuts
  • 2 tsp oil
  • salt to taste
  • cilantro for garnishing

Preparation - Cook the rice in a regular manner (pan/pressure cooker/electric cooker). Keep aside for 5 mins.

Cooking - Heat the oil in a wok. Add the peanuts and fry for 1-2 mins. Remove and keep aside.

Add the broken red chili, mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, curry leaves and asafoetida to the same wok. Fry for 30 secs.

Add the tamarind juice, 3-4 tbsp water, salt and sugar. Let it boil for 2-3 mins till it turns thick.

Add the cooked rice and mango ginger. Mix in. Cook for 2 mins.

Finally mix in the peanuts and cilantro. Remove from flame.

Serve hot !! (I served it with a brinjal raita /dahi baigana)

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Curd Rice /Thayir Sadam (Comfort food from down South)

"Does anyone need a recipe for curd rice ??", I blurted out in bewilderment. "Yes, in fact a lot of them do. Else they will keep dishing out variations that range from being chewy to being downright watery", replied by frustrated husband. He had had a particularly bad day at office and it was exacerbated by the unpalatable lunch that the caterer had chosen to serve. Though the curd rice served by the canteen guys is never the best, it was really bad that day and had my husband fuming.

Now even though I am not a South Indian, I have stayed down South for a long time and have picked up the nuances of quite a few South Indian recipes (especially the ones that my husband and kid adore). And I do make good curd rice ( a fact endorsed by my South Indian friends ). I find it easy, quick and quite soothing on the tummy. So, while it is a staple during the summers, I end up making it once in a while during the winters when I have had a heavy dinner on the previous night.

( Do not forget to check out the Odia version of this recipe - Dahi Pakhala )

Read on for my recipe -

Preparation Time - 10 mins

Ingredients -

  • 1 cup cooked rice (needs to be cooked softer than usual)
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2/3 cup fresh yogurt
  • 3 tbsp coarsely grated carrot
  • 1 sprig curry leaves (finely chopped)
  • 1-2 finely chopped green chilis
  • 7-8 cashews (finely chopped)
  • 1 tsp urad dal
  • 1/4 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 dry red chili (I prefer Byadgi which gives a good flavor)
  • a pinch of asafoetida
  • 2 tsp oil
  • salt to taste

Preparation - Take the still warm rice in a mixing bowl. Use the back of a heavy spoon to mash it up. Add warm milk little by little and mix it up.

Allow the rice and milk mix to cool down completely before adding the beaten curd. Add salt, grated carrot and chopped green chilis to the mixing bowl and mix everything thoroughly.

Heat the oil in a tempering pan. Add the mustard seeds, urad dal, cashews, dry red chili, asafoetida and curry leaves. Fry for 8-10 seconds.

Pour the tempering over the contents of the mixing bowl. Mix it uniformly.

Serve immediately along with a pickle and/or papad .

Note - If you are making it for kids, do not put any green chilis. Instead add about 1/2 tsp sugar and fruits like grapes (chopped into small bits), pineapple (chopped into small bits) and pomegranate. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Green Mango Rice (Mamidikaya Pulihore)

Green mangoes are much in season and I am trying to make the best use of this opportunity. From chutneys to dal, summer drinks to main meals, I have added it to everything. There is something about the tongue tickling mouth watering tang provided by these green mangoes that makes me go bonkers.

I was feeling quite lazy yesterday afternoon and was hesitant to cook something. But a growling tummy has its own way of kicking one into action. When I finally sauntered up to the fridge, I saw some leftover rice. Immediately, the thought of some indo-chinese style fried rice cam to my mind but as I rummaged though the cut-vegetables boxes, I found a few slices of raw mango. I usually cut up the veggies on the weekends to save some time on busy weekdays. That is when I decided to make some lip-smacking mango pulihore.

Read on for my version of this South-Indian delicacy -

Preparation Time - 8-10 mins ( I have used cooked rice but if you do not have it, add another 10-15 mins )

Ingredients -

2 cups cooked rice
1/3 cup grated green mango ( you can increase/decrease as per liking )
a handful of peanuts
2 tbsp skinless urad dal
2 dry byadgi chillis
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
a sprig of curry leaf
a generous pinch of asafoetida
2-3 tsp oil
salt to taste

Cooking - Heat the oil in a shallow pan. Add mustard seeds and broken red chilis. Once the mustard starts spluttering, add curry leaves with asafoetida. Fry till they wilt a bit or  turn brown.

Add the urad dal and peanuts. Turn up the flame so that they crackle a bit.

Add the raw mango and stir for 1 minute. Finally add the rice .

Sprinkle salt to taste and gently mix in. Cook for another 2-3 minutes. Remove from the pan.

Serve hot with some papad.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Vangi Baath (Brinjal rice)

Vangi baath or brinjal rice is a spicy and sour rice dish (with a hint of sweetness which is optional) that is quite easy to prepare. Though I had tasted this for the first time in Hyderabad, I did not quite like it at the time. But it was reintroduced to me by one of my roomies who used to cook it with a special home-made masala and I have been a fan ever since. Maybe the fact that she was a Kannada Brahmin made all the difference. After all, its origins are attributed to the Brahmin community of Karnataka.

I made it with parboiled rice ( which is healthier) but usually people make it with raw rice. I quickly made a bit of 'Vangi baath masala' at home (got the recipe on net) but it is quite easily available in the shops. And even my kid likes it when I reduce the amount of 'Vangi baath' masala and add a sprinkling of jaggery. Read on for the recipe:

Preparation Time - 15 mins ( if you have cooked rice else add time needed to prepare rice )

Ingredients -

  • 1 cup cooked rice
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced brinjal
  • 8-10 cashews
  • 2 tsp channa dal
  • 1/2 tsp thick tamarind paste
  • 1 red chilli
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 4 tsp cooking oil
  • 2 pinch turmeric
  • salt to taste

For the Vangi baath Masala

  • 2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp fenugreek (methi) seeds
  • 6-7 cloves
  • 2 red chilli
  • 1 marathi moggu
  • 1 inch cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp split urad dal
  • 1 tsp oil

Preparation - Add a little salt and turmeric to the brinjal slices. Keep aside for 10 mins.
Cooking - Heat 1 tsp oil in a frying pan. Add all the ingredients for Vangi Baath Masala and fry till a  fragrance starts to fill the kitchen. Remove and allow to cool a bit. Grind into a fine powder.

Heat 2 tsp oil in a wok. Add the brinjal slices and fry till cooked.

Add 1 1/2 tsp of the Vangi Baath Powder ( I keep it less spicy ) along with the tamarind paste (diluted with 3-4 tsp water). Fry for 1 minute.

Add the cooked rice and mix in. Adjust salt.

Heat 1 tsp oil for the tempering. Add broken red chilli, mustard seeds and channa dal. After channa dal turns a little brown, add cashews. Pour the tempering over the rice. Mix in.

Serve hot with yogurt and papad.

Note - If you like a hint of sweetness, add about 1-2 tsp powdered jaggery while adding the tamarind paste.

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