Here's a recipe for Bisi Bele Bhath, a flavorful and traditional dish from Karnataka, India:
For the spice paste:
- 2 tablespoons chana dal (Bengal gram)
- 1 tablespoon urad dal (split black gram)
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
- 6-8 dried red chilies
- 1/2 teaspoon peppercorns
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
For the Bisi Bele Bhath:
- 1 cup rice
- 1/2 cup toor dal (split pigeon peas)
- 2 cups mixed vegetables (carrots, beans, peas, bell peppers, etc.), chopped
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 tomatoes, chopped
- 1/4 cup tamarind pulp
- 1 tablespoon jaggery or brown sugar
- 1/4 cup peanuts (optional)
- 2 tablespoons ghee (clarified butter)
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- A pinch of asafoetida (hing)
- Curry leaves for garnishing
- Salt to taste
- Water as needed
- Dry roast all the ingredients listed under "spice paste" in a pan until they turn aromatic and slightly golden. Allow them to cool, then grind them into a fine powder using a blender or spice grinder. Set aside.
- Wash the rice and toor dal (split pigeon peas) separately. Soak them in water for 30 minutes. Drain and set aside.
- In a pressure cooker or a large pot, add the soaked rice, toor dal, mixed vegetables, chopped onion, chopped tomatoes, tamarind pulp, jaggery (or brown sugar), peanuts (if using), and salt.
- Add 4 cups of water and mix well. Cover the pressure cooker or pot and cook on medium heat for 4-5 whistles in the pressure cooker or until the rice and dal are cooked and vegetables are tender. If using a pot, cook until the rice, dal, and vegetables are soft and well-cooked.
- Once the pressure releases naturally or if using a pot, remove from heat and set aside.
- In a separate pan, heat ghee over medium heat. Add mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Allow them to splutter.
- Add asafoetida and curry leaves to the pan. Sauté for a few seconds.
- Add the ground spice paste to the pan and sauté for a minute until fragrant.
- Transfer the cooked rice, dal, and vegetable mixture into the pan with the spice paste. Mix well to combine all the flavors.
- Adjust the consistency of the Bisi Bele Bhath by adding more water if needed. It should have a thick, porridge-like consistency.
- Simmer the Bisi Bele Bhath for 10-15 minutes on low heat, stirring occasionally, to allow the flavors to meld together.
Your homemade Bisi Bele Bhath is now ready to be served. Traditionally, it is garnished with ghee and served hot with a side of papad or raita. Enjoy this flavorful and satisfying South Indian dish.