Friday, July 23, 2010

Bisi Bele Bath - Hot Lentil Rice

Bisi Bele Bath - A rice based dish unique to the the state of Karnataka, India - which translates to hot- lentil - rice in Kannada language. The traditional preparation of this dish is quite elaborate and involves the use of spicy masala, toor dhal ( a form of lentil) and vegetables. But now a days, we get good Bisi Bele Bath powders that solves the problem of grinding spices for this recipe. It can be served with papad, raitha, vadam or chips. Its a great dish when we have guests at home or for potlucks. Very easy and tastes great.


Serves 2 people

Rice - 1/2 cup ( I used the rice cookers cup for all measurements)
Toor Dhal - 1/2 cup
Mixed Vegetables - 1 cup cut lenghtwise (carrot, beans, potato, peas)
Onion - 1 cut length wise
Salt - To taste
Bisi Bele Bath powder - 2 tbsp
Tamarind - 1 medium lemon size ( Soak in warm water and take out the juice - about 2 cups)

For Seasoning:

Ghee - 4 tsp
Mustard - 2 tsp
Cumin Seeds - 2 tsp
Curry Leaves - 5 to 8
Hing (asafoetida) - A dash

For Garnish:

Cashews - 8-10 broken
Ghee - 3 tsp
Corriander leaves - handful (chopped)

First cook rice and toor dhal together and keep it aside. Also boil vegetables. In a pan, add ghee and when ghee is hot add mustard. Once it starts to splutter, add cumin seeds, curry leaves and asafoetida. Now add onions and sautee till it becomes translucent. Meanwhile, take out pulp from tamarind. You can extract maximum juice out of tamarind. Add it to the onions and let boil for 3- 5 mins till the raw smell of the tamarind reduces. Now you can add the bisi bele bath powder, salt and let it boil for another 3 mins. Add the cooked rice and dhal along with the vegetables to this boiling mixture. Mix everything together and let it cook till everything sets well with vegetables and rice. If you feel it is too thick you can add water to loosen the consistency.  Let it cook in low to medium flame for about 10 mins.

 Once its cooked garnish with cashews fried in ghee. You can also add corriander leaves to it. I like to add corriander in most of my recipes as it has a good flavor, nice texture and of course good for health.

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