Rice dishes are evergreen. Everyone loves them and more importantly rice is so versatile that you can do so many different things with them. Use them as a snack, incorporate them in your main course, treat them as a side dish with curry of your choice or prepare a delicious dessert with them. Rice is one of the most easily available ingredient in every corner of the world. Do you love rice? What’s your favourite rice dish? Please let me know in the comments below:
Here are seven easy rice recipes from my kitchen:
1. Fried Rice : I think fried rice are popular in every culture and everyone has their own family favourite. Fried rice can be made in so many different ways. I like Shrimp fried rice with chicken fried rice being close second. If you don’t eat meat, you can try egg fried rice or veg fried rice. The best thing about fried rice is that you can consume leftover rice easily and give them a new life. Fried rice are full of flavour and a complete meal in itself.
2. Masala Rice : Here is a super simple way to spice up plain old boring rice.
1 cup basmati rice
1-2 tbsp oil
2 cups water
1/2 cup chopped onions
2-3 cinnamon sticks (1 inch pieces)
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
5-6 black peppercorns
1 black cardamom (Moti elaichi)
1 bay leaf (tejpatta)
2 cloves (laung)
salt per taste
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp red chilli pwd
Optional – 1 small green chilli chopped
Cilantro and green onions for garnish
1. Pre-soak rice in water for 20 mins.
2. Heat oil in a pot and fry cumin seeds, cinnamon, black peppercorn, cardamom and cloves.
3. Add onions, salt, turmeric and chilli pwd. Fry for 2 mins.
4. Add rice and stir for 2 mins.
5. Add 2 cups of water and cook on high. When water comes to boil, turn down the heat and continue cooking until done.
6. Garnish with cilantro and serve.
3. Jeera Rice: Jeera means Cumin and this rice dish is not only easy to make it goes well with wide variety of Indian curries.
Ingredients and Method
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1-2 tbsp Oil
1 cup Basmati Rice (or any other variety)
2 cups of water
Method: Wash and drain the rice. Depending on the variety you may or may not need to soak them. Basmati rice usually doesn’t require any pre soaking. Heat oil in a pot and add cumin seeds. Let seeds sizzle for 30 secs and then add rice. Mix well. Add water and cook covered until water evaporates. Serve with curry of your choice.
4. Lemon Rice: Like the flavour of lemon? Well, try this Indian style Lemon rice dish made with turmeric, curry leaves, cumin seeds, mustard seeds and lemon juice.
5. Idlis : Idlis come from Southern part of India and are basically plain steamed rice cakes. These can be eaten for breakfast or as a snack. Particularly yum when paired with Sambhar (which is lentils and vegetables stew.) Sometimes when I want a quick healthy snack, I prepare Idlis (South Indian Rice Cakes.) Now during most of those times I usually have batter on hand. I prefer making Idli-dosa batter in bulk (put it in the freezer in small portions) and prepare fresh, soft idlis as per requirement.
All you need for the batter is Rice (any kind is fine…don’t be stereotypical and go for idli rice only.), Urad Dhal, Fenugreek seeds and salt. The ratio for rice: Urad Dhal for the batter is 4:1. Process is a little lengthy but easy and so worth it..not to mention healthy as well. Begin by soaking rice, dal and Fenugreek seeds for 4-5 hours. After soaking grind them and then add 1 tsp salt and let the batter ferment for atleast 8 hours.. longer in colder regions. Once the batter is ready, refrigerate it. Stays fresh for 3-5 days or freeze it for upto 3 months in small batches and make Dosa’s and idli’s when required. Alternatively you can also make Dosa’s and Idli’s and freeze them..although fresh are the best. To make idlis, simply put batter in the idli mould and steam for 4-5 mins in the microwave. Serve Idlis with Sambhar, Coconut Chutney or Tamarind Chutney.
6. Kheer : Talk about Indian desserts is incomplete without mention of Kheer which is rich and creamy Indian rice pudding made with milk and rice and flavoured with cardamom, saffron, variety of dry fruit or even Kewra, Rose essence etc.
7. Veg Pilaf : Pilaf, Pulao or Pulav are all the same. In this dish we flavour rice with Indian spices and cook them along with vegetables. Pulao tastes best with Raita (yogurt based preparation) or even plain yogurt/dahi.
8. Meethe Chawal : My daughter loves Meethe Chawal. This is a sweet rice dish flavoured with Indian spices and garnished with dry fruit. This is a popular Punjabi rice dish. You can add dallops of Ghee on it to make it even more tasty.
Ingredients ( Served 1-2)
1/2 cup rice
1 cup full cream milk
2 tbsp ghee/melted butter
15 strands of saffron
2 green cardamom
1 black cardamom
2-3 cinnamon sticks
1/3 cup dry fruit of your choice (Raisins, almonds, cashews etc)
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1. Soak rice in water for 20 mins.
2. Dissolve saffron in 2 tbsp of milk
3. Toast your dry fruit (not raisins)
4. Heat a heavy bottom pan and add ghee in it.
5. Add your spices. Fry for 2 mins.
6. Add Rice. Mix well. Add sugar and saffron infused milk.
7. Add Milk and cook until milk dries up and rice are cooked.
8. Add in toasted dry fruit and raisins.
9. Mix well and serve 🙂
9. Phirni : Popular Punjabi Dessert, Phirni is made with rice and milk but in this case rice are ground.