Everyday Simple Recipes, Main Dish, South Indian, Vegan

Eggplant Rice – A One-Pot Meal

Recently I have been finding one-pot meals very interesting. I never used to like them earlier, only for the reason that I was not familiar with them. At home the only one-pot meal we knew was curd rice, tomato rice, lemon rice, and tamarind rice. Apart from these, I was not used to pilaf or biriyani simply because at home we do not use garam masala. Meal to us meant rice accompanied with a gravy and a subzi. It took me several years to get out of that comfort zone.

Lunch boxKarnataka cuisine has many varieties of one-pot meals. The first meal I had at MTR had some of these including Bisibele bath. Personally not a big fan of that one. But vangi bath or eggplant/brinjal rice has been a favorite ever since the first time. Eggplant rice is a very good option to make when you are expecting guests and need to make rice and roti-subzi. This one-pot meal does not need much preparation, can be made quickly, and gives you ample time to attend to other things. It is a convenient lunch to carry to schools and work places.

Let me add the disclaimer first! This recipe requires a special powder called Vangi Bath masala powder. Like many other ready-to-mix powders that are available in the market (most famous brand being MTR), this powder is also available. I am not sure if it is widely available like a puliyodarai mix! In this recipe, I have not explained how to make the vangi bath mix because I do not know how to. I bought the masala mix from my friendly neighborhood Iyengar’s Bakery that sells masalas, snacks, and some tasty dosas and meals.

Vangi bath masala mix can be prepared at home and has good shelf life. Aayis Recipe, a veteran food blogger’s version can be checked here. This one over here is good too.

Traditional recipe only uses brinjal but I used potato and capsicum as well. I quite loved the taste!

Ingredients:
Rice (raw rice/biriyani rice preferred) – 1 glass
Oil – 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Brinjal – 2 medium sized
Potato – 1 medium sized
Capsicum – 1 medium sized
Green chillies – 2
Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
Vangi Bath mix – 1 tbsp
Roasted peanuts – 1/2 cup
Coriander leaves – a bunch
Curry leaves – 2 stalks
Lemon juice – of half a lime or as desired
Salt – as needed

Method:
VegetablesPressure cook rice and keep aside.

Wash and clean the vegetables. Peel potato, remove stalk from eggplant and capsicum. Cut in rectangular pieces (can be cut as desired). Separate the capsicum pieces from the brinjal and potato pieces. Split the green chillies. Keep aside.

Heat an iron kadai and pour oil. Add mustard seeds to the oil. After mustard seeds splutter, add cut brinjal, potato, curry leaves, and green chilies. Add turmeric powder. Stir well to coat oil on the vegetables and close with a lid. Cook for 5-7 minutes in slow fire stirring occasionally. At 5 minutes, add capsicum pieces. Cook for another 2 minutes or so until all vegetables are tender. Add vangi bath mix and salt. Stir for a minute and turn off fire. Add the cooked rice. If rice is very hot, it might break while mixing. So make sure that the rice has cooled down a little bit. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves, roasted peanuts, and lemon juice. Mix well. Serve with papad and raita.Vangi bath, salad, and papad

I made mixed veg raita using cucumber, onion, carrot, curd, green chilies, coriander leaves, and salt. Makes a wholesome meal of carbs, cooked vegetables, fresh vegetables, curd for probiotic, and the fried papad to add a little bit of sin!

Everyday Simple Recipes, Main Dish, Palakkad Iyer Recipes, South Indian

Curd Rice (Thair Sadam)

On a weekend afternoon when you are just not in a mood to cook, too lazy to get out for lunch, and don’t want to have a heavy meal, make curd rice, or thair sadam as we South Indians call it. I feel if you take count of the top 100 contributions of Tamilians to the rest of the world, curd rice will undoubtedly top the list. It’s easy to make and it’s easy on your tummy too. Its comfort food for me. When I go to a buffet and see a huge spread in front of me, I suddenly feel really full. So I take some plain rice on my plate and some curd and eat that with dal and papad. If there’s pickle too, nothing like it..mmmm…yummy! If curd is not available, I try to sneak in some raita and mix it with rice. I know many of you might disapprove!

Let’s see how to make the simple curd rice.

 

Ingredients:

Cooked rice – 1 cup
Cooking oil – 1 tbsp
Curd – 3 tbsp
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Split black lentil (urad dal) – 1 tsp
Ginger – 1/2 inch piece
Curd chilly/slit green chilies – 2
Curry leaves – 1 stalk
Chopped coriander leaves – 2 tbsp
Salt to taste

Preparation Time: 5 mins.
Cooking Time: 2 mins.

Method:

Pour oil on to a pan and put mustard seeds and split black lentil. Add slit green chillies or curd chillies. Chop the ginger finely and add to the oil after the mustard seeds splutter and split black lentil and chillies turns brown. Add curry leaves as well. Sauté until ginger pieces are cooked. Add cooked rice and stir well. (If you are using leftover rice from the fridge, you can cook the rice for 3 mins). Cook for a minute and turn off the fire. Sprinkle finely chopped coriander leaves. Let it cool for a minute. Add curd and mix well. You can add chopped cucumber pieces to the curd rice and make it healthier. If you won’t have the curd rice immediately, use half the amount of curd and mix some milk along with the curd and rice. This ensures that the curd rice doesn’t become too sour by the time you eat.

Serve with hot appalams (Madrasi papad) and fried curd chillies (Spicy green chillies slit and marinated in sour salted buttermilk and sun dried. Available in South Indian stores.)  and mango or lime pickle. Describing this is making me salivate!

Addendum: You just cannot afford to miss this blog post on Thair sadam!

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