This delicious poha dish makes a beautifully nurturing breakfast or meal at any time. The poha is quickly cooked with spices and lemon juice – it is quickly made after soaking for 15 mins. It is so easy you could (almost) do it with your eyes closed.
Poha is available at your Indian grocery store – it is rice that has been steamed and pressed or rolled flat. There are at least half a dozen varieties, including thin, very thin, medium and thick. For this recipe, use thick or medium poha in this recipe so that it holds its shape after soaking. Thick poha is preferable.
Lemony Poha (Aval)
1 cup thick poha
0.25 tspn turmeric powder
juice 0.5 – 1 lemon or lime, depending on size
sea salt, to taste
1.5 tspn ghee or Indian sesame oil
1 tspn black mustard seeds
0.5 tspn urad dal
1 tspn channa dal
2 fresh red or green chillies, chopped, or to taste
8 – 10 curry leaves
Carefully rinse the thick poha and soak for 15 mins in just enough water to cover, with the lemon juice, salt, turmeric and asafoetida. If you are using medium poha, the soaking time is a lot less, just enough to soften it.
Heat the ghee or oil in a kadhai and pop the mustard seeds. As the popping subsides, add the dals and chillies. As the dals turn golden, add the curry leaves, carefully avoiding their spluttering.
Now add the soaked poha and mix well. Cover and simmer over a low heat for 5 – 7 minutes. Stir through a little more ghee or sesame oil and a little more lemon juice, and garnish with coriander leaves.
recipe notes and alternatives
Don’t waste the rind of the lemon. Grate finely and stir through at the end of cooking.