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.

 


Rice Vermicelli Tawa Pulav (Gluten Free)

Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, barley, triticale and in some cases oats. Gluten is commonly blamed for gut symptoms experienced by people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). However, recent research suggests that the carbohydrate component in wheat, rye and barley is more likely to be the cause of the problem (part of a group of foods known as FODMAPS.A gluten-free diet allows bowel healing and symptom improvement in people with coeliac disease.

Tawa vermicelli pulav is a recipe using the rice noodles found in the Asian section of the grocery store and the pav bhaji masala. I prefer using rice vermicelli instead of the more commonly used  wheat vermicelli. It’s a tasty and unique dish to take in the lunch box too. The pav bhaji masala gives a very different flavour to the dish.

Rice Vermicelli Tawa Pulav

Ingredients for Rice Vermicelli Tawa Pulav:

  • Rice vermicelli: 500g
  • Mixed vegetables: 1 cup chopped (green beans, carrots, peas, capsicum, etc)
  • Onion: 1 medium(thinly sliced)
  • Cashew nuts: 10 nos.
  • Ginger garlic paste: 2tsp
  • Tomato: 2 big , finely chopped
  • Green chilies: 1 slit lengthwise (optional)
  • Pav bhaji masala: 3 tsp
  • Kashmiri red chili powder: 1/2-1 tsp (as per heat tolerance)
  • Turmeric powder: 1/4 tsp
  • Jeera: 1tsp
  • Cinnamon: 1″ stick
  • Cardamom: 2nos.
  • Coriander: 3 tbsp( finely chopped) for garnish
  • Lemon juice: 2 tsp
  • Oil/ Butter/Ghee: 1 tbsp
  • Salt: to taste

Method:

  • Heat oil/butter in a kadai and add the cumin/jeera, cinnamon, cardamom, cashews ,slit chili(optional)
  • Then add the turmeric powder, sliced onions and the ginger garlic paste. Saute till the onions start turning brown.
  • Add, the mixed vegetables and stir fry till the vegetables are almost cooked.
  • In the meanwhile, boil some water with a tsp of oil in a saucepan. Once it boils switch off,add the rice noodles/vermicelli(broken into smaller pieces) and let it sit for 2 minutes and then drain and keep aside.
  • Add the chopped tomatoes ,salt and saute until the tomato turn soft and mushy then add the pav bhaji masala, chili powder.
  • Saute until the oil is released from the masala paste.
  • Add the rice noodles/vermicelli and mix well to coat every strand of the vermicelli with the masala.
  • Squeeze some lime juice, mix well and garnish with chopped coriander leaves.
  • Serve the Rice vermicelli tawa pulav with raita or as is.

Mixed Vegetable Pulav with Coconut Milk (Pressure/Rice Cooker)

Another Gluten free rice pulav recipe. The addition of coconut milk gives a different flavour to the pulav, You can add turmeric if you don’t like the white colour of the pulav-but I don’t add it as it makes the pulav look different.

This can be made in a pressure cooker or even in the rice cooker. I normally fry it in a kadai and then transfer it into the rice cooker and add water and let it steam. I know many who even do the frying of the onions and veggies in the rice cooker itself-but I prefer to do it separately.

Mixed Vegetable Pulav with Coconut Milk (Pressure/Rice Cooker)

Ingredients for Mixed vegetable pulav with coconut milk

  • Basmati rice: 1 cup
  • Mixed vegetables(Green beans, carrots, peas): 1 cup
  • Onion: 1 medium (thinly sliced)
  • Ginger-garlic paste: 1 tsp
  • Green Chilis: 1-2 (slit length wise)
  • Cashew nuts: 10-12nos.
  • Jeera: 1 tsp
  • Cardamom: 4nos.
  • Cinnamon: 1″
  • Peppercorns: 8nos.
  • Cloves: 4nos.
  • Bay leaf: 1 no.
  • Coriander leaves: 2-3 tbsp (chopped)
  • Coconut milk: 2 cups
  • Ghee: 2tbsp
  • salt to taste

Method:

  1.  Wash and soak the rice for 20 minutes.
  • In the meanwhile , heat 2 tsp of ghee in a kadai /pressure pan and add the whole spices (cumin seeds, pepper, cinnamon, etc) and saute for a few seconds.Then add the green chilies and cashews.
  • Add the sliced onions and saute till the onions start turning golden.
  • Add the mixed veggies and saute for a 1-2 minutes(if using the rice cooker, then make sure to saute it for a little longer till the veggies are half cooked)) .
  • Add the ginger garlic paste and saute till the raw aroma of ginger and garlic goes away.
  • Drain the water from the soaked rice and add it to the kadai and fry for a few minutes (if making in a rice cooker, now would be the step to transfer from the kadai to the rice cooker).
  • Add the coconut milk, salt to taste add 1 tbsp chopped coriander leaves and mix well.
  • Pressure cook for one whistle(if using rice cooker, just switch on and it’ll be ready in 15-20mins)
  • Once the pressure drops, open the lid and gently fluff the pulav.
  • Garnish with coriander leaves and serve with a spicy side dish(as this pulav is mostly bland, it’s best served with something spicy)

Paneer Mushroom Mattar Masala

Who doesn’t love paneer? Besides being a good source of protein, paneer also contains calcium and phosphorus. Since paneer is high in protein and low in calories, it is often recommended for weight loss as several studies indicate that eating high protein foods tends to increase feelings of fullness and help decrease overall calorie intake, which in turn may lead to weight loss.

Try out this yummy recipe with mushrooms and red bell peppers. Mushrooms are high in antioxidants, selenium and low in fat, and calories while the red peppers(red capsicum) is optional, they do add loads of flavour to the dish while also adding antioxidants and Vitamin A to the dish.

Paneer Mushroom Mattar Masala

Ingredients for Paneer Mushroom Mattar Masala:

  • Mushrooms: 1 packet (sliced)
  • Capsicum(optional): 1 big (cubed)
  • Peas: 100g
  • Paneer: 250g (cut into cubes)
  • Tomatoes: 3 big
  • Onions: 1 big (2 medium)
  • Cashew nut: 8-10 nos.
  • Ginger Garlic paste: 1 tbsp
  • Green chili: 1-2 nos. according to spice tolerance( slit lengthwise)
  • Red Chili Powder: 1 -1.5 tbsp(as per spice tolerance)
  • Garam Masala: 1/4 tsp
  • Coriander powder: 1 tbsp
  • Turmeric Powder: 1/4 tsp
  • Bay leaf: 1
  • Cardamom: 3nos.
  • Cinnamon: 1″
  • Jeera: 1 tsp
  • Coriander leaves: 2 tbsp – finely chopped
  • Oil/ghee: 2tbsp
  • Salt: to taste

Method:

  1. Heat oil/ ghee in a kadai and add the cubed capsicum and saute for 5-8mins. Keep aside.
  2. In the same kadai, add the onions and saute till translucent. Then add the chopped tomatoes and cashews and saute for about 5 mins till the tomatoes look cooked. Switch off and let this cool.Then puree this in a blender.
  3. In the same kadai add a little more oil, then add the turmeric powder,green chili, jeera, bay leaves, cardamom and cinnamon stick and saute for a few seconds.
  4. Add the puree, red chili powder, coriander powder, garam masala and stir fry till the oil separates.
  5. Add the peas and mushrooms and saute for a few seconds. Add a cup of water and mix well.
  6. After it starts to boil,let it simmer till the gravy has thickened.
  7. Add the paneer and the sauteed paneer and mix well.
  8. Switch off and garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves.
  9. Serve hot with rotis or even with jeera rice.

Cabbage Zunka/ Junka (Cabbage and Besan/Chickpea flour stir-fry)

Zunka/Junka is a common Maharashtrian dish which is also known as pitle/pitla in some places. The basic dish is made with besan/chickpea flour and water with a tempering of onions, ginger and garlic. This simple and quick dish is mostly eaten with bakhri made from either rice or jowar.

Kobiachi(Cabbage) Zunka is a variation of this dish by first adding cabbage and then the rest of the Zunka ingredients.

Cabbage Zunka/Junka

Ingredients for Cabbage Zunka:

  • Cabbage- 2 cups (finely chopped)
  • Onion- 1 cup (finely chopped)
  • Besan(chickpea flour)- 1/2 to 3/4 cup
  • Garlic pods: 3-4
  • Turmeric- 1/4 tsp
  • Hing/Asafoetida: a pinch (optional)
  • Chili powder- 1-2 tsp(as per your spice tolerance)
  • Garam masala- 1/4 tsp
  • Coriander leaves : 3 -4 tbsp (finely chopped)
  • Oil- 2-3 tbsp

Method:

  1. Heat oil in a kadai and add the smashed garlic and hing(optional). When it turns slightly brown, add the onions and saute till the onions turn translucent.
  2.  Then add turmeric, chili powder, salt and stir fry for a few seconds.
  3. Add the cabbage and mix well such that the spices coat the cabbage evenly.
  4. Cover and cook. The cabbage will go soft and release its own juices after about 7-10 minutes.
  5. Now quickly stir in the besan/chickpea flour and saute gently on medium heat. Make sure there are no lumps of the flour. The besan will absorb the juices and cook.
  6. Cover and cook on low heat for another 4-5 minutes.
  7. Now open the cover, check that everything has been cooked well and mixed. The besan should give out a wonderful cooked aroma.
  8. Garnish with lots of chopped coriander and serve hot with rotis or even hot rice, dal and pickle.

 


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.

 

 

 

 


Achari Paneer and Vegetable Tikkas

A great dish for any Barbecue Party for vegetarians.  This mouth watering dish features fresh paneer and vegetables marinated in a traditional spicy pickle mix and grilled.

Ingredients for Achari Paneer and Vegetable Tikkas (Serves 8-10)

  • Paneer: 500g (cut into 1″ cubes)
  • Mixed veg(bell peppers, mushroom,onions, cauliflower, zucchini,etc): 500g (chopped into bite size pieces)
  • Pickle gravy: 2 tbsps (add more if you like it spicy)
  • Hung curd/yogurt: 1/2 cup
  • Onion seeds: 2 tsp
  • Ginger+ garlic Paste: 1 tbsp
  • Red chili powder: 1 tsp
  • Coriander powder: 1 tbsp
  • Turmeric powder: 1/2 tsp
  • Garam masala : 1 tsp
  • Grass fed Butter/Ghee: 3 tbsp
  • Satay sticks: 10-12 (let it soak in a bowl of water if grilling)
  • Oil: 2 tbsp
  • Salt: to taste

Method:

  1. In a bowl mix the hung curd along with the pickle gravy, onion seeds, ginger+garlic paste, red chili powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, garam masala, 2 tbsp ghee/butter and salt. Mix well.
  2. Add the paneer cubes and chopped mixed vegetables and mix well to coat them with the marinade.
  3. Let it marinade for at least 30 mins. String the paneer and vegetables on the sticks(you can alternate the paneer and vegetables)
  4. Heat oil in pan and place the paneer sticks. Keep rotating the sticks so that the paneer and vegetables get cooked evenly on all sides.
  5. Serve with mint and yogurt dip.

For Chicken Achaari Kebab recipe, click here: Chicken Achaari Kebab


Mixed Vegetable Pulav/Pilaf (Gluten free, Vegan)

This is an easy recipe and can be made for the lunch box or even for a party.

Recipe for Mixed Vegetable Pulav:

Ingredients: (Serves 6-8)

  • Brown Rice/ Basmati: 2 cups (soak in water for 30 mins)
  • Tomatoes: 3 medium (finely chopped)
  • Onions: 1 1/2 big or 2 medium sized (finely sliced)
  • Garlic: 3-4 (finely chopped)
  • Ginger: 1 ” piece (grated)
  • Green chilies: 1-4 (depending on your heat tolerance)
  • Mixed vegetables: 1 1/2 cups cut into bite sized pieces(carrot,cauliflower, peas, green beans)
  • Cinnamon: 2″ stick
  • Cloves: 4-5nos.
  • Peppercorns: 5-6 nos.
  • Bay leaf: 2nos.
  • Cardamoms: 4 nos.
  • Jeera/Cumin seeds: 2 tsp
  • Turmeric: 1/2 tsp
  • Red chili powder: 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander powder: 1 1/2 tsp (heaped)
  • Garam masala: 1/4 tsp
  • Oil/ Butter/ Ghee: 3 tbsp
  • Water: 4 cups
  • Salt: to taste
  • Cilantro leaves: 2 tbsp (chopped) for garnishing
  • Mint leaves: a few (for garnish)

Method: 

  1. Heat the oil in a pressure cooker, add the whole spices (cumin, cloves, cinnamon, bay leaves, cardamom, peppercorn).
  2. When the jeera seeds start to sizzle, add the chopped garlic and saute on a low flame till it starts to brown.
  3. Add turmeric and the onions, salt and saute till the onions start turning pinkish brown.
  4. Add the tomatoes and cook till they are completely mashed and oil starts to leave the sides.
  5. Add the red chili powder, coriander powder, garam masala and mix well.
  6. Then add the mixed vegetables and mix till the masala coats the vegetables.
  7. Strain the rice and add it and mix for 1-2 minutes.
  8. Add the water, mix and taste the water for salt and flavours.
  9. close the lid of the pressure cooker and cook for 2 whistles. Switch off
  10. Once the pressure drops open the cooker and garnish with coriander leaves(cilantro) and mint leaves. Slowly fluff the pulav a little.
  11. Serve the mixed vegetable pulav with raita.

 


10 Ways to sneak in more vegetables in your diet

The benefits of eating a diet rich in vegetables are many-from lowering cholesterol, controlling sugar levels, aiding weight loss, fighting cancer to relieving constipation. However, most dietitians still feel that the common man is not eating enough vegetables to get the full benefits.
The question in most people’s mind: How much vegetable should one consume in day? 
The answer is around 5-9 servings of vegetables and fruits/day. That would mean around 4-5 cups of fruits and vegetables, which is a lot. Most of us tend to eat not more than 1-2 cups/day. So how does one achieve eating the recommended amounts?

I always advocate eating foods in a form that is as close to how it’s found in nature as this requires the body to break it down which takes time. The longer it takes for the body to digest food, the longer it stays in your stomach thus keeping you fuller for a longer period of time. So it’s best to eat your vegetables as salads or sabzi’s (don’t overcook them as that would kill all the nutrients). In addition to eating them as salads or sabzi’s,
Here are some tips to sneak in more vegetables into your diet:
1. Add vegetables to dishes which you would normally not do so -instead of plain upma, kichidi, poha, noodles, pasta, dal, add some mixed veggies into these dishes and you make them more nutritious and a filling dish.
2. Add grated veggies to any dish-you can add grated carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, beetroot, etc to roti’s, chutney’s, chaats, dosa, idli and even salads. Try sprinkling some grated vegetables like carrots on top of dishes as a garnish-it makes the dish more colourful and inviting.
3. Add a salad with every meal-these need not be limited to just cucumber and tomatoes. A lot more vegetables like beetroot, radish, methi leaves, spinach, cabbage, broccoli, knol-khol/kohlrabi, turnips, and capsicum/bell pepper can be eaten raw. Pulses and legumes and even some grains can be sprouted and added to the salads (like wheat, methi seeds, moong/mung, channa,etc). To avoid boredom, try out 3 different salads every week. You could even mix fruits and vegetables together to make some exotic combinations.
4. Add vegetable purees-to soups, curries, chapathi dough, dosa batter.
5. Add chopped/sliced veggies to sandwiches, wraps, bhel puri, fruit chaats.
6. Make dips with vegetables/fruits-avocado, cucumber, mint, cilantro/coriander leaves, pumpkin, apple, strawberries, figs, etc can all be made into tasty dips. These can be also used as spreads on whole wheat breads and phulkas to make healthy snacks.
7. Eat raw vegetables for snacks– carrots, celery, parsnips can be paired with the fruit/vegetable dips to get double the vegetables!
8. Add veggies to meat/poultry/fish curries. Even scrambled eggs taste better when you add some sautéed veggies like tomatoes, onions, mushrooms and capsicum/bell pepper!
9. Make chutney’s with vegetables/fruits-you don’t have to limit chutneys to just coriander/cilantro or mint. Try making chutneys from brinjal/eggplant, tomatoes, onions, apples, carrots, etc .Eat them with your meals or add them to your salads, breads, yogurts to create a unique dish!
10. Make your own veg+fruit smoothies– mix and match veggies with some sweet fruits to make your own smoothies/juices.  The pulp contains the fiber-so do not to strain it out.

Sweta Uchil

Indian Dietitian