Matar Pulao | Rice Pulao with Peas

When rice forms a major part of a cuisine then there are infinite recipes using rice. Contrast this with cuisines in which it isn’t so important. When growing up, rice was used mainly for rice pudding and an even rarer rice salad. Apart from that it was unusual to have rice with a meal. I guess my mother bought rice only when she wanted to make a pudding – whereas I keep the pantry stocked with 6 – 8 different types of rice. Sticky rice, black and/or red rice, basmati, short grain rice, risotto rice and pongal rice are fairly standard pantry items.

These days I love rice cooked with spices and a vegetable or with lentils. It forms a great addition to any meal, especially Indian meals. It is also a great way to use up any vegetables sitting at the bottom of the fridge on a Friday night – prior to doing the next week’s shopping.

Peas Pulao or Matar Pulao is a popular dish which was made especially during the cooler months in northern parts of India. It can be made in a pressure cooker or rice cooker as well. This is the second version of peas and rice – the spicing is very different in each one.

Similar recipes include Narangi Pulao, Green Pea Pilaf, Rice in Tomato Juice, and Broad Bean and Dill Rice.

Browse all of our Rice dishes and all of our Pea dishes. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Early Spring recipes.

Continue reading “Matar Pulao | Rice Pulao with Peas”

Coconut Sticky Black Rice Pudding

I was fortunate to have holidays in Bali before it became a tourist nightmare. Back in the days when the culture was still strong and visible and the rowdy tourists were fewer and stuck to the beaches. Back in the days when it was possible to see forbidden villages, inner sanctums of temples, people making tofu and tempeh in their back yards and to come across beautiful cultural performances without tourists.

Also to come across a range of ingredients and cooking techniques that were at the time fairly unknown outside of Indonesia. Amongst those was the afternoon servings of locally made sweet items including a coconut black rice dish (Bubu Injin).

I tried to bring some local black rice back with me, but of course it was not permitted by customs. Luckily, glutinous rices are now available from Asian shops, as are pandan leaves and palm sugar.

Similar recipes include Char Grilled Stone Fruit with Scented Yoghurt, Balinese Sweet Red Rice, Black Rice with Chinese Flavours, Black Glutinous Rice Congee, Mushrooms with Black Glutinous Rice, and Pandan Rice Pudding.

Browse all of our Balinese recipes, our Glutinous Rice dishes and our Rice Puddings.

Continue reading “Coconut Sticky Black Rice Pudding”

Breakfast Rice and Raisin Porridge

I am not much of a breakfast eater, and in general prefer the savoury options common in Northern and Eastern Europe, and those of India and S.E. Asia, to the sweet and sickly options of the West English speaking countries. Don’t get me wrong, I love a true French croissant with jam, and sometimes pancakes with honey (or sugar and lemon juice). I even have a large container full of my overnight oats mix on standby for mornings when I am super hungry as there is no other cereal in the house. But mostly we either skip the morning meal or prefer something more savoury. Even the overnight oats is unsweetened beyond the dried fruit and dried citrus that it contains.

This breakfast, however, is a little sweet – it has raisins in it – but is rice based, so that is a plus. It is for the days that I do crave some sweetness. Rice is ground to a coarse mix then cooked with the dried fruit. Cinnamon is added to bring a warm sweetness to the dish. You can sweeten it more with your sweetener of choice – I’ve always loved Golden Syrup. It is also great with spiced glazed apples or poached oranges and vanilla ricotta.

Rice porridge is mostly made for breakfast but in this house, it can be eaten at any time of the day. It is a great Winter dessert when your cupboards are bare. Rice and raisins – there isn’t anything more simple. Top with cream and fruit.

This dish can also be made savoury – omit the raisins and cook with Indian spices. Gorgeous. Use spices that you might use for Upma. Top with cashew nuts sauteed in ghee.

You need a high speed blender to make this dish.

Similar recipes include Black Rice with Tomatoes, Breakfast Dishes, and Poached Oranges with Ricotta.

Browse all of our Breakfasts and all of our Rice dishes. Or simply explore our Early Spring recipes.

Continue reading “Breakfast Rice and Raisin Porridge”

Summery Grain or Lentil Salad

This is a versatile Summer salad. The base can be a grain, dried bean, lentil or even tiny pasta. Indeed you can mix them as well. Use couscous, barley, freekeh, burghul, Israeli couscous, small pasta, horse gram, quinoa, rice, puy lentils, matki beans, butter beans or haricot beans. This is definitely a salad that helps you clean out your pantry – use any grain, lentil or bean that you have available. Today I am using barley mixed with a little tiny pasta.

Just a note about the salad dressing. It uses a curry powder. Either use a good quality one or make your own. My Mother used to make a Curried Rice Salad, and we loved it. This is my take on that salad. Today I have used barley as a base, with a little tiny tubular pasta. It is great alongside an Halloumi Burger and steamed sweetcorn!

Similar dishes include Freekeh and Burghul Pilaf, Quinoa Salad with Orange, Pasta and Couscous Salads, and Parsley, Barley and Feta Salad.

Browse all our very many Salads, and all of our Barley recipes. Or browse our Late Summer dishes.

Continue reading “Summery Grain or Lentil Salad”

Balinese Style Sweet Red Rice with Sweet Spices and Coconut Milk

Recently I’ve been playing with some of the recipes from the week-long cooking school in Bali. This red rice dish mimics the spices and leaves used in Balinese cuisine and serves the rice with coconut milk, mango puree, toasted coconut and roasted slices of lime. However, you can top the rice with any number of things – dried mango or other dried fruits, diced rockmelon, ripe papaya for example.

Just a note about the rice – this is Balinese, Indonesian or Thai style red rice, not the red rice of Sri Lanka or Kerala. These rices might also make a great dish but I have not tried them in this way. Suitable rice can be found here in Australia in red packets and called Forbidden Rice. The Black Forbidden Rice might also be suitable, and dramatic, to use.

Similar recipes include Sago Payasam, Sweet Congee with Poached Oranges, and Warm Rice Pudding with Orange Star Anise Sauce.

Browse all of our Red Rice recipes and all of our Rice Puddings. Or browse our Early Winter Recipes.

Continue reading “Balinese Style Sweet Red Rice with Sweet Spices and Coconut Milk”

Savoury Black Glutinous Rice with Chinese Flavours

Black glutinous rice is a nutty, earthy flavoured rice with a stunning colour that is mostly used for a coconut black rice pudding. But I love it as a savoury dish. This one can easily be cooked in the rice cooker.

Similar dishes include Black Glutinous Rice Congee, and Mushrooms with Black Glutinous Rice.

Or explore all of our Glutinous Rice and Black Rice dishes.

Continue reading “Savoury Black Glutinous Rice with Chinese Flavours”

Cooling Yoghurt Rice | Curd Rice | Thayir Sadham

As we head into another heatwave, thoughts turn again to cooling dishes. One of the most nutritious and cooling is yoghurt rice, also called curd rice. It tastes cool and refreshing on the hottest of summer days.

Yoghurt rice is made from rice cooked until mushy, then cooled and mixed with yoghurt and spices. It can be garnished in various ways, including with fruit, cucumber, onion, herbs and pomegranate. Today we have kept it simple. It can be eaten as-is or accompanied with a papad and pickle. Yum!

This dish is also often used in Temples as Naivedyam and Prasadam. We have made it quite thick here – just add more yoghurt to get a thinner texture.

Similar dishes include Sri Lankan Yellow Rice with Yoghurt, Yoghurt Curry, and Jeera Rice.

Browse all of our Indian Rice dishes, and all of our Yoghurt dishes. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Mid Summer recipes.

Continue reading “Cooling Yoghurt Rice | Curd Rice | Thayir Sadham”

Sesame Rice | Ellu Saadham

This is a lovely South Indian rice dish with the gorgeous flavours of peanuts and sesame seeds – distinctly South Indian. It is a traditional Tamil and Kannadiga dish made especially during festivals. Truth be told, with the sesame seeds, it tastes a little like a tahini rice with peanuts, coconut and chilli.

It is also a great “packed rice” dish – food packed for a long journey – katu saadham was traditionally given to wedding guests for their travels back home.

This recipe works well with any variety of rice. Sona Masuri is the preferred rice in South Indian, and so it is most common to make it with this variety. But it can even be made with basmatti as I did today.

Sesame seed is a wonderful ingredient. In Ayurveda sesame is a wonderful rejuvenative food, especially for vata. It has a strong heating effect that soothes the cold quality of vata. But it should be avoided by those with high pita. They are also said to be strengthening to the lungs and help alleviate an aggravated kapha.

Similar recipes include Pepper- Cumin Rice, Tomato Rice, and Clove and Cardamom Rice.

Browse all of our Mixed Rice recipes and all of our Sesame dishes. All of our Indian dishes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore ourĀ  Mid Spring recipes.

Continue reading “Sesame Rice | Ellu Saadham”

Saffron and Cardamom Pilaf

Rice. Such an essential food around the world, particularly in the countries from the Middle East to India, around to Indonesia, then up through South East Asia, through China, Korea and Japan. Then if you pop through many island countries and parts of Africa, more rice dishes can be found. So many delicious ways with rice.

This is a pilaf flavoured only with saffron and cardamom. Subtle and delicious, with the sweetness of sauteed onions.

Similar recipes include Tomato Rice, Okra and Coconut Rice, and Black Cumin and Pepper Rice.

Browse all of our Rice recipes and all of our Pilafs. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Mid Autumn recipes.

Continue reading “Saffron and Cardamom Pilaf”

Super Healthy Urad and Red Rice Kitchari with Spinach

As you know, I am a sucker for a good kitchari. The best known kitchari dishes are made with rice and mung dal, but in fact it can be made with any grains and lentils cooked together. You can see a range of different ones here. Today’s version uses the delicious Urad Dal with some Red Rice.

As an aside, kitchari is often called risotto by some recipe writers/sharers. This is not accurate – kitchari might be closer to a congee even tho that also is not a great analogy. Read here to see the differences between kitchari and risotto – including that risotto is perfectly cooked rice, just a little al dente, and kitchari often over-cooks the rice to form a gorgeous porridge-like texture. This is especially true in the South of India. In the North, it can be closer to a pilau or pilaf – still a long way from a risotto.

Any red rice can be used in this recipe. I am using a Wild Red Rice (labelled Forbidden Rice in the supermarket), but red Basmati can be used or a Keralite or Sri Lankan red rice. I have also made it with an equal ratio of Urad Dal, Pongal Rice and Wild Red Rice. In a pinch, make it with any white rice in place of the red rice.

Keep in mind that urad dal has a great affinity for ghee/butter and cumin seeds. Tomatoes also. Best not to skimp on these ingredients.

Similar recipes include Moth Bean Kitchari, Ghee Pongal, and Sabudana Kitchari.

Browse all of our Kitchari recipes and all of our Urad Dal dishes. Or browse our Late Winter recipes.

Continue reading “Super Healthy Urad and Red Rice Kitchari with Spinach”