How to cook Red parboiled rice (Rosematta/ Oorpel ari)

How to cook Red parboiled rice (Rosematta/ Oorpel ari)

Parboiled rice (rosematta/oorpel ari) is the type of rice that is commonly made in Manglaore/Udupi, Kerala, and some parts of Tamil Nadu. It is fondly known as ‘bullet rice’ in my house as each grain of rice is double the size of the regular white rice. Parboiled rice is partially precooked in its husk, which helps to retain the nutrients that would otherwise be lost during polishing. It is believed to be good for the gut health and impact blood sugar less than brown/ white rice.

Here’s a simple way of cooking parboiled rice in the cooker (pot in cooker and draining method):

Method:

  1. Soak about a cup of parboiled rice in water for about 15 minutes. Wash it well in several rinses of water, till the water turns clear.
  2. Drain and put the rise in a pot that fits into the pressure cooker. Add about 4-5 cups of water into the pot.
  3. Put some water into the pressure cooker and place the pot inside the cooker.
  4. Close the lid and let it cook for at least 6-7 whistles.
  5. When the pressure drops open the pressure cooker, add another two cups of hot water to the pot and stir.
  6. Then close the pot with a lid and tilt the pot to drain the water(use a kitchen cloth to hold the pot). You can even use clips to keep the lid on the pot.
  7. Once the water is drained, open the pot and fluff. Serve hot with curries.

 


Mangalorean Fish Curry (Bangude Ghassi)

Fish is a high-protein food that provides a range of health benefits. Fatty fish are an excellent dietary source of omega 3. The fish that are rich in Omega 3’s are mackerel, salmon, sardines, prawns and oysters. Omega-3 fatty acids are a vital component of the diet as they can minimize inflammation and keep the body healthy.

Here is a simple and easy Mangalorean fish curry recipe:

Ingredients:

  • Mackerel/ or any fish: 4-5 (cut into 4 pieces)
  • Onion: 1 small (half to be used when grinding paste, half to be chopped and added to the gravy)
  • Coconut: 1/2 cup  grated (fresh)
  • Coriander seeds: 1 tsp
  • Cumin seeds (jeera): 1/4 tsp
  • Methi seeds(fenugreek seeds): 1/4 tsp
  • Peppercorns:4-5
  • Dry Bedagi chilies(or any long dry red chilies): 3
  • Short red dry chilies: 3
  • Green chili: 1-2 slit lengthwise
  • Turmeric: 1/2 tsp
  • Garlic: 12-3 cloves
  • Tamarind paste: 1/2- 3/4  tsp
  • Salt: to taste

Method:

  1. Marinate the fish in a bit of salt and turmeric.
  2. Lightly roast and grind the red chilies, coriander seeds, cumins seeds, peppercorns, and grind to a paste along with the grated coconut, garlic and half the onion.
  3. Heat a pot, add the ground spice paste, chopped onion, green chilies, and a cup of water and cook the onion, and green chili.
  4. Add a little more water if needed, to reach a thick consistency. Add in the fish and cook till done. Add the tamarind paste and more salt, if needed.
  5. Do not stir the pot with a ladle, but gently swirl the pot to move the contents around.
  6. Switch off after 5 minutes. Serve hot with parboiled rice.

Check out the recipe to cook Mangalorean Parboiled (red) rice:

 

 


Malabar Spinach Tambuli (Basale Soppu Tambli)

Tambli/tambuli is a curd based dish typically made in Udupi/ Mangalore kitchens. It can be made with different green leafy vegetables (palak, curry leaves, etc) or even garlic. Since rice is the predominant grain in the traditional south Indian homes, this is served as a side to rice along with vegetables.

Basella or vine spinach is a popular tropical leafy-green vegetable, commonly grown as backyard herb in most home gardens in Mangalore. Fresh leaves are rich sources of several anti-oxidants such as ß-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin.
Its thick, fleshy leaves are an excellent source of non-starch polysaccharide, mucilage.

Basale Soppu/ Poi

Malabar spinach is rich in soluble fibre, Vitamins A & C,  iron, calcium, magnesium and potassium.This tambli made with Basale soppu/Malabar spinach is also believed to cure mouth ulcers.

Ingredients:

  • Malabar spinach or basale soppu: A big handful (washed and coarsely chopped)
  • Yogurt/curd: 1 cup fresh (not too sour)
  • Grated coconut: 1/2 cup (fresh/frozen)
  • Green chili: 1-2 nos. (optional)
  • Cumin seeds/Jeera: 1/2 tsp

For the tempering:

  • Mustard seeds: 1/4 tsp
  • Urad dal: 1/4 tsp
  • Red chili: 1/2
  • Curry leaves: a few
  • Oil/ghee: 1 tbsp

Method:

  1. Heat some oil in a frying pan and add the cumin seeds and green chili. When the cumin starts sizzling add the Malabar spinach leaves and saute till they are wilted. Keep aside to cool.
  2. Once cool, grind to a paste along with the coconut and  just enough water to make a paste in a blender/mixie.
  3. Transfer the paste to a bowl and add the yogurt and mix well. The consistency of the tambli should be thinner than chutney. So add enough water if it is too thick.
  4. Heat a little oil in a tadka pan, add the mustard seeds , urad dal and when it starts to pop add the dry red chili and curry leaves.
  5. Add this to the tambli and serve along with hot rice and vegetables.

Benefits of Fermented foods (Fluffy Idli Recipe)

Naturally fermented foods may help strengthen your gut microbiome which are basically the beneficial bacteria and microorganisms that live in your digestive tract. Gut microbes are now believed to be key to many aspects of human health including obesity, immune, metabolic and neuro-behavioural traits. Reseraches believe that fermented and probiotic foods are seen to improve immunity, aid in better digestion, prevention of allergies and also treating diarrhea.

One such naturally fermented food that is commonly made in most South Indian homes regularly are idlis and dosas. Who knew eating the humble idli (in moderation) could actually benefit your health?

Besides idli/dosa batter here are some of the other Indian foods that are fermented:

  • Curds/dahi/yogurt– a part of of a traditional meal in most Indian families, this contains live cultures.
  • Pickles
  • Gajar/Beetroot Kanji (North India): a drink made with fermented carrots/beetroot
  • Traditional Dhoklas (Gujrat) that are fermented and not instant
  • Traditional Handvo (Gujrat)-where the batter is let to ferment overnight
  • Fermented rice– called panta or poita bath(Assam, West Bengal,Tripura),  pazhaiya choru(Kerala), pazhaya saadam (Tamil Nadu) is basically the extra cooked rice soaked in water overnight during which it ferments, and is eaten in the morning with buttermilk and garnish of onions, green chilies etc.
  • Gundruk (Himalyan areas, Darjeeling, Sikkim): Fermented greens
  • Sinki (Himalyan areas, Uttarkhand, Sikkim): Fermented radish
  • Iromba( Manipur):  A dish made with fermented fish

Besides these there are many drinks/dishes that incorporate curds/buttermilk like kadhi, Rajasthani rabdi, Ragi ambli (Karnataka) and yeast fermented products like traditional naan and parottas.

Coming back to the humble idli,  what exactly happens when you ferment the idli batter?How does it become more nutritious?

During the fermentation process the carbohydrates get converted into simpler sugars that are easier to digest. This is one of main reasons that it is given to babies and those who are sick. It also increases the bioavailablity of many vitamins and minerals  such as iron, potassium and calcium and also increases the vitamin B content. It was seen that after 12 hours of fermentation of 100 grams of rice, the availability of iron changed from 3.4 mg to 73.91mg .

Unlike other fermented foods which still have the live cultures, the steaming process will kill the live cultures but it still makes the idli more nutritious than plain rice and dal.

Try making your own batter instead of buying store made ones. It’s easy, just follow this recipe:

Ingredients for Idli:

  • Idli (Par boiled) rice: 2 cups
  • Urad dal (skinless) : 1/2 cup 
  • Fenugreek seeds – 1/2 tsp 
  • Beaten rice (poha) – 1/3 cup
  • Salt : to taste

Method:

  1. Wash and soak  the urad dal (without skin), idli rice and fenugreek seeds in water for 6-7 hours. Soak poha for 1/2 hour before grinding.
  2. Grind the urad dal with enough cold water to make a smooth, fluffy paste. Keep aside.
  3. Grind the idli rice along with the poha with enough water till you get a smooth paste.
  4. Now mix the rice batter with the urad dal batter. Add salt (if the weather is cold, avoid adding salt if the weather is hot) and mix it well to aerate the batter with enough air to aid in fermentation.
  5. Let it ferment overnight (if it’s cold, you can keep it inside the oven with the light of the oven switched on).
  6. In the morning, mix the fermented batter well and grease the idli moulds.
  7. Boil water in a steamer, once water starts boiling,  pour the batter into the greased moulds.
  8. Steam for 10-12 minutes or until it is cooked.
  9. Serve with sambar and chutney.

Beetroot Leaves Dal

Do you throw out the Beetroot leaves? STOP!!! 

Don’t just cut off the green leafy tops and toss them away! The leaves and the stems are edible, and make a great substitute for any green such as palak, swiss chard, collard greens, bok choy. They  can be added to dals/sambars, soups or added to sabzis.

Beetroot leaves 

The best part of buying beetroot with the leaves-you can make two dishes for the price of one!! Other leaves that are edible and should not be thrown out:

  1. Radish leaves: Click here for Radish sabzi with leaves
  2. Turnip Leaves: Click here for Turnip leaves sabzi(Sri Lankan style)

Here is a simple dal with the beetroot leaves. (Note:The stems (like the beetroot) have a natural pink dye that can turn the dal slightly pink).

Ingredients for Beetroot leaves dal: Serves 4-5
  • 1 cup toor dal/arhar dal
  • 2.5 cups water
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 teaspoons oil/ ghee
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 2 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1-2 green chili, slit
  • 1/4 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1/2 -1 tsp red chili powder (optional)
  • 1 tbsp coriander powder (optional)
  • salt, to taste
  • 1-2 teaspoon lemon juice

Method:

  1. To a pressure cooker add the washed toor dal, add 2.5 cups water,  and 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder. Cook at high flame for 3 whistles. Let the pressure of the cooker come off on it’s own. Then mash well.
  2. Heat oil in a pan on medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add cumin seeds and mustard seeds. Wait till cumin seeds crackle and mustard seeds start popping out.
  3. Once the seeds start popping, add chopped garlic and green chili. Saute for a minute or till garlic just starts turning golden brown in color.
  4. Add chopped tomatoes, salt and cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Add chopped beetroot leaves and mix. Cook for 2-3 minutes or till the leaves are wilted.
  6. Add the mashed dal to the pan, a cup of water , the red chili powder and coriander powder (both optional, but I like to have the extra spice)and let it all come to a boil. Lower the heat, add more water if needed and let the dal simmer for 5 minutes.
  7. Check the salt and adjust to taste. Sprinkle garam on top and remove pan from heat.
  8. Squeeze in some fresh lemon juice and serve beetroot leaves dal with any hot rotis or steamed rice.

Other Beetroot recipes:

  1. Beetroot Mocktail/ Juice: Click for recipe here
  2. Beetroot Upkari(a simple Mangalorean style stir-fry): Click for recipe here
  3. Beetroot and Carrot Salad: Click here for recipe

 


Beetroot Upkari (a simple Mangalorean style stir-fry)

Though beetroot is loaded with vitamins and minerals, including B vitamins, iron, magnesium and potassium, it isn’t a popular vegetable and somehow doesn’t get onto the diet more often. The nutrients they contain fight inflammation, lower your blood pressure, and could also fight cancers.

Since it is naturally sweet, it can be used as a salad by those who don’t like sweet vegetable sabzi.

Here is a simple Mangalorean style stir-fry which tastes great with chapathis and even with rice and dal. My kids love eating it with curd rice as they love to see the colour of the curd rice change from white to pink when they mix the beetroot with it. Do note that beetroot has a naturally occurring dye that can colour your hands/cutting boards while cutting. It will also cause you to have pink stools and urine after consuming it, so don’t be alarmed.

Beetroot Upkari: Serves 4-5

Ingredients:

  • Beetroot: 3 big
  • Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
  • Green chilli- 2-3
  • Curry leaves- Few
  • Urad dal/ Split Black gram- 1 tsp
  • Coconut Oil- 1 tsp
  • Salt- To taste
  • Sambar powder(optional): 1-2 tsp
  • Grated Coconut: 2-3 tbsp for garnish

Method:

  1. Wash and peel the beetroot. Then chop it into small cubes.
  2. Heat oil in a kadai and add mustard seeds. Once it starts popping, green chilli, curry leaves and urad dal. Fry for a minute.
  3. Add in the chopped beetroot and mix well. Add the salt and water, sambhar powder(for a variation, though not added to regular upkari), close and cook for 15-20 minutes on a medium flame.
  4.  Once cooked, add grated coconut as garnish and serve with rice+dal or curd rice or even chapathis.

Other Beetroot Recipes:

  1. Beetroot Juice: Click here for recipe

Beetroot Juice is a great drink for athletes ,sports persons and for those who exercise regularly as beetroot is loaded with nitrates . Nitrates when consumed are converted to nitric oxide which helps in opening the blood vessels and allows more blood and thereby oxygen to be delivered to the muscles.

 

 

 

 


Mangalorean Kori Rotti and Chicken Curry

Kori Rotti  is another Mangalorean favourite. What makes it different is the crispy rotti. Kori means Chicken and the rotti  is rice dosa that are dried and are hard like papad.  We always bought the kori rotti from Mangalore stores when we were in India, and was overjoyed when I spotted it in the Indian Stores in the US.

The chicken curry is a spicy coconut based gravy that is poured over the crisp rotti. The best way to eat this would be with your hands. I love my rotti to be slightly crunchy so I don’t let it sit in the gravy for too long, but some love it all soggy and soaked up in the gravy.

Ingredients for Kori Curry (Mangalorean Chicken Curry):

  • Chicken (whole): 1 kg (chopped into small pieces, washed)
  • Onions: 2 big (finely chopped)
  • Methi seeds: 6-8 nos.
  • Tamarind paste: 1/2 tsp
  • Coconut milk: 1.5 cans
  • Salt: to taste
  • Oil: 2 tablespoon
  • Ghee: 1 tsp

For Grinding together:

  • Onions: 1 big (or 2 small)
  • Coconut: 1/2 cup (scraped)
  • Garlic: 3 cloves+ 2 cloves (chopped)
  • Dry red chilies: 12 nos.
  • Bydagi chilies:  12 nos. for colour
  • Coriander seeds:2 tbsp
  • Jeera seeds: 1 tsp
  • Peppercorns: 1/2 tsp
  • Methi: 1/4 tsp
  • Turmeric:1/2 tsp
  • Oil: 2 tbsp

Method:

  1. First roast all the dry masala ingredients(dry chilies, coriander,methi,jeera,peppercorns)  separately and keep aside.
  2. Then in a kadai, add the oil , once it is hot add the sliced onions, 3 cloves garlic and fry till the onions are slightly brown.
  3. Add the coconut and stir fry till the coconut starts turning brown (make sure to keep stirring, otherwise it will burn). Then switch off and let it cool.
  4. Grind all the ingredients (onions+coconut mixture) along with the roasted spices and the 2 cloves of garlic. Add little water and grind till you get a fine paste.
  5. Add some salt, turmeric and the ground masala paste to the chicken and let it marinate for 1/2 an hour.
  6. In a big vessel, add the oil and heat, add the methi seeds, sliced onions and saute till the onions turn pink.
  7. Add the marinated chicken, salt and saute for a few minutes. Lower the heat and cover and cook till the chicken is done (add a little water),
  8. Add the coconut milk, tamarind paste and let it boil.

How to eat:

  • Since we don’t have the traditional deep steel plates that holds the gravy, I prefer to eat this in bowls, but you can eat this on a regular plate.
  • Break the rotti into bite sized pieces and place on the plate. Pour the chicken curry over the pieces. Let it soak or just dig in.
  • It tends to get a little dry after the rotti has soaked up the gravy so you can top it with some more.

Mangalorean Chicken Sukka (Kori Ajadina)

This is one of the famous Mangalorean dishes (the other’s being Neer Dosa, Kori Rotti and chicken curry) . As the name suggests it’s a dry dish with loads and loads of coconut.

Again, there are many versions, this is my families recipe 🙂

 

Ingredients for Kori Ajadina (Mangalorean Chicken Sukka):

  • Chicken (whole): 1 kg (chopped into small pieces, washed)
  • Onions: 2 big (finely chopped)
  • Methi seeds: 6-8 nos.
  • Tamarind paste: 1/2 tsp
  • Salt: to taste
  • Oil: 2 tablespoon
  • Ghee: 1 tsp

For Grinding together:

  • Onions: 1 big (or 2 small)
  • Coconut: 1/2 cup (scraped)
  • Garlic: 3 cloves+ 2 cloves (chopped)
  • Dry red chilies: 12 nos.
  • Bydagi chilies:  12 nos. for colour
  • Coriander seeds:2 tbsp
  • Jeera seeds: 1 tsp
  • Peppercorns: 1/2 tsp
  • Methi: 1/4 tsp
  • Turmeric:1/2 tsp
  • Oil: 2 tbsp

For garnishing:

Fresh Coconut: 2 1/2 cups (saute till it turns slightly brown )

Method:

  1. First roast all the dry masala ingredients(dry chilies, coriander,methi,jeera,peppercorns)  separately and keep aside.
  2. Then in a kadai, add the oil , once it is hot add the sliced onions, 3 cloves garlic and fry till the onions are slightly brown.
  3. Add the coconut and stir fry till the coconut starts turning brown (make sure to keep stirring, otherwise it will burn). Then switch off and let it cool.
  4. Grind all the ingredients (onions+coconut mixture) along with the roasted spices and the 2 cloves of garlic. Add little water and grind till you get a fine paste.
  5. Add some salt, turmeric and the ground masala paste to the chicken and let it marinate for 1/2 an hour.
  6. In a big vessel, add the oil and heat, add the methi seeds, sliced onions and saute till the onions turn pink.
  7. Add the marinated chicken, salt and saute for a few minutes. Lower the heat and cover and cook till the chicken is done (add very little water if needed as the chicken will leave water).
  8. Then open, add the tamarind paste and cook uncovered till you get a thickish gravy.
  9. Add the sauteed coconut and mix well such that the coconut coats every piece of the chicken.
  10. Serve with rice and dal.

Other famous Mangalorean recipes:

  1. Neer Dosa
  2. Kori Rotti 
  3. Drumstick leaves Upkari
  4. Collard Upkari
  5. Mangalorean Egg Curry
  6. Mangalore cucumber and Moong Sprouts gassi 
  7. Alasande Kalu Gassi (Lobia/black eyed beans in spicy coconut gravy)
  8. Kadale Manoli (Brown chickpeas with tondli)
  9. Kala Channa rasam 
  10. Sweet Banana Dosa
  11. Ragi Manni/ Pudding (Millet pudding)
  12. Moong Dal Payasa/ Kheer

 

 

 


Mango Dosa (Gluten Free Mango Pancakes)

It’s mango season,and who doesn’t love mangoes?

Mango is high in fibre, and loaded with vitamins A and C. It also contains folate, B6, iron and lots of antioxidants.

I just had to try something different.I tweaked this traditional Manglorean(a small seaside town in South India that my side of the family is originally from) Sweet Dosa recipe and added mangoes instead of cucumbers.As a kid,I grew up watching my mom and gran starting the next day’s breakfast preparations a day in advance.We always woke up smelling the wonderful aromas wafting from the kitchen. This recipe too is no exception,I had to soak the rice once we were done with breakfast,grind it in the evening and let it ferment overnight,and voila the batter for the next day’s breakfast was ready.
Traditionally it’s made with either Southekai(Kannada for cucumber) or with watermelon. Otherwise it has all the original ingredients like:

Beaten rice/Rice flakes: ‘Poha’ is rice that is dehusked and then flattened into light flakes. Traditionally flattened with iron rods,it used to contain more iron than regular rice.
Jaggery: or ‘gur’,is a traditional non-refined sugar(made from either cane sugar or from date palm) which is rich in non-heme iron and other mineral salts.

Fenugreek seeds: ‘Methi’ seeds as it’s commonly known in India, is a known galactagogue and recent studies have shown that it has cholesterol and serum glucose lowering properties as well.
Ingredients:

  • Rice: 1 cup
  • Flattened rice/Poha: 1/2 cup
  • Jaggery(scraped): 3/4th cup (or sugar-1/2 cup)
  • Yogurt(preferably homemade)-1/2 cup
  • Fenugreek/Methi seeds-1/2 teaspoon
  • Ripe Mango:1 big or 2 small
  • Salt:1/2 teaspoon

Method:

  1. Wash the rice and the fenugreek seeds,then soak it in water for at least 6-7 hours.
  2. Wash and drain the flattened rice and let it stand for about 10-15 mins.
  3. Grind all ingredients(except the mango) till you get a fine batter.Let it ferment for at least 8-9 hours or overnight(works well in warm weather). The batter will double in volume.
  4. Make a puree of the mango pulp(when sugar is added to this pulp,it’s called ‘aamras’).If using cucumber instead of mangoes,then grate half (a big) cucumber and mix with the batter.
  5. Mix this puree with the batter and pour a ladle of the batter onto a hot non-stick pan and spread.
  6. Cover with a lid and cook on medium flame for two or three minutes. Then cook uncovered till the dosa is done.
  7. Serve hot(you can serve it with cut mangoes or even with some ‘aamras’).

Note:

  1. If the weather is not warm enough(as was the case when I made it),the batter will not ferment and the dosa will not get tiny little holes on it( the dosa will be flat as seen in the snap).
  2. The jaggery tends to add a brownish colour to the dosa(if you add sugar,the dosa will turn out a lovely yellow colour) but the dosas are more nutritious when made with jaggery.
  3. Traditionally the dosa is eaten hot with a little ghee spread on top. Since the dosas are sweet, you can eat it as it is.
  4. I used the Scarlet Sweet mango for this recipe,you could use any of the sweet mangoes available.

Mangalore Basale Curry (Malabar Spinach and Whole Moong in coconut gravy)

Basale soppu or Malabar /Ceylon Spinach is also called as mayalu in Marathi and poi in Gujrathi . It’s very common to see houses in Mangalore growing it and Basale ghassi or Basale koddel is a specialty of the region. Malabar spinach is rich in vitamins A, C, iron and calcium, and is also good source of soluble fiber.  The addition of green moong not only increases the protein conent of the dish but also adds a lot of flavour to it.

I was lucky to find the seeds locally and have been making this curry with homegrown organic basala. This is how Basala and payar (whole moong) curry is made in my family.

Ingredients for Mangalore Basale curry:

  • Green moong: 1 cup (wash and soak for an hour)
  • Basalla /Malabar Spinach: 3 cups (washed, chopped, both leaves and stems are traditionally used)
  • Tomato: 2 small or 1 Big
  • Salt: to taste
  • Tamarind paste: 1/4tsp

Grind together:

  • Grated coconut/dessicated coconut: 1 1/2 cups
  • Onion: 1 medium, sliced
  • Turmeric: 1/4tsp
  • Red chili powder(or 8-10 whole dried byadagi chilies roasted): 1-2tbsp (as per your heat tolerance)
  • Coriander powder (or 1 tbsp corriander seeds roasted): 1tbsp
  • Cumin powder: 3tsp
  • Mustard seeds:1/2 tsp (optional)
  • Garlic: 2 cloves

Method:

  1. Pressure cook the moong and the basale (leaves and stem) without adding salt for one whistle.
  2. Grind the ingredients mentioned under grind together to a smooth paste and keep aside.
  3. Open the pressure cooker (if it’s too small, then transfer contents to a deep vessel), add the ground masala, little water, cut tomatoes, tamarind paste and salt.
  4. Allow the curry to boil vigorously for five minutes, check for salt, tamarind add more if required. Adjust the consistency if needed before switching off.
  5. It is traditionally served with rice, but tastes great with chapathis too.

Note: You can add seasoning/tadka if you want, but it isn’t added in our family recipe.