Posted in Easy Rice options, experiments with rice., No onion no garlic foods

Coconut Milk Pulav

Cooking without onions and garlic is always a challenge. But during festive seasons I make it a point to not to add them. Like during vrats, navratri etc even if you don’t fast, most people try avoiding use of onion and garlic. This pulav recipe comes handy and when paired with some kurma or raita it’s a complete meal. The best part being it’s a one pot lunch. Can be made quickly and still nutritious. Handy for working people who are pressed for time.



Addition of coconut milk makes it richer but completely optional. Just add normal water also would be fine. Here goes the recipe:

Continue reading “Coconut Milk Pulav”

Posted in Easy Rice options, experiments with rice., Lunchbox ideas, variety rice

Tomato Rice

Making a healthy lunchbox every day is a challenge for mommies. I like tomato rice but not the typical South Indian one ( would post that one soon). I like it somewhere between pulav and sadam. This version is loved by kiddo so i try to make it more regularly .This recipe comes handy as it can be made in as less as 20 minutes. Packed with the goodness of tomatoes and subtly flavored this one is a regular in my weekly lunch box meal



Here goes the recipe:


2 cups Basmati Rice

1 tbsp Ghee +Oil

I cup Onions finely sliced

3-4 cloves of garlic chopped finely.

2 Large sized tomatoes riped ones

1 tsp mustard seeds

A pinch of hing

1 tsp each Turmeric powder, chili powder, coriander powder Pav bhaji Masala

To Garnish:

A handful of coriander leaves.





Cook the rice till the grains separate and allow it to cool until further use.

Heat the oil + ghee in a pan and add the mustard seeds and hing

When the mustard pops , add the finely sliced onion along with the green chilies, slit.

Let the onions saute to a golden brown and then add the garlic, and turmeric, red chili, pav bhaji masala. Saute for a while longer (30 seconds or so) for the garlic to get toasted.

Add the chopped tomatoes to this and cook on low flame.

When the tomatoes begin to cook and turn soft, help it along by smashing it with your ladle.

In about 5-7 minutes, you should have a mushy tomato paste mixture. Add salt at this stage and turn off the heat.

Mix in the cooked rice. Add some first and see if the rice is flavored right for you. Add rice suiting your taste or mild/ spicy

Mix well and let the rice sit for 30 minutes at least before serving.

Garnish with coriander and serve alongside curd and chips.



Posted in easy lunchbox ideas, Easy Rice options, experiments with rice., variety rice

Phodni Bhaath (style 2)

Left over rice can be cooked in different ways. They work like a charm in making variety rice because they are cool completely and the grains separated. One such variety rice is making “Phodni Bhaath” , meaning tempered rice with spices and a squeeze of lemon. Adding veggies make it more nutritious and tasty. Makes a great option for lunchbox when pressed for time, also requires minimal effort. Pairs well with any raita or even chips.


Here goes the recipe:


Cooked Rice: 1 cup (Any rice will work)

Veggies :1/4 cup (any would do)

Onions: 1 finely chopped

Green chili: 2 slit

Curry Leaves: 8-10 leaves

Turmeric Powder: 1 tsp

Pav Bhaji Masala: 2 tsp

Salt to taste

To Temper:

Oil: 2 tbsp

Mustard Seeds: 1 tsp

Hing : a pinch

Coriander leaves : 1 handful for garnish

Lemon juice of half a lemon


  1. Heat a pan, add oil, add “to temper”, fry for a minute, slit chili and onions and sauté till translucent.
  2. Add the turmeric powder, salt and veggies( i added bhindi and carrots)  and cook till crisp.
  3. Add rice, pav bhaji masala, lemon juice and mix gently till well blended.
  4. Garnish with coriander leaves.Check for salt.
  5. Serve with raita or chips.





Posted in Easy Rice options

Dal Khicadi

Winters call for comfort food. So does lazy days, when all we want to do is, well laze around, read a book, curl on a bed doing nothing. There are days when after festive eating’s too all we crave for is a simple dal rice meal. Maybe with Diwali round the corner, this one should be bookmarked for, after all the loaded oil, ghee snacks we would like to have something that’s simple on the tummy. 🙂

Also is a good, comfort food for bouts of cold, fever as this one has all the nutrients, to make you feel filled as well as light on stomach too. 🙂 OK, enough of my ranting let’s move to the recipe:


Serves: 2


Rice: 1 cup

Onion: 1 medium sized chopped

Sprouts: 1/2 cup

Garlic : 2 pods

Peanuts: 1 tbsp

Green peas : 1/2 cup

Curry leaves : 8 – 10

Green Chilli : 3 chopped

Red chilli : 2 table spoon

Asafoetida (Hing) : a pinch

Oil +Ghee: 2 tbsp

Cumin seeds: 1 tbsp

Mustard Seeds: 1 tsp

Cinnamon: 1 inch

Cloves: 2-3

BayLeaf: 1

Water: 2 1/2 to 3 cups.

 To garnish:

Coriander leaves: 1 tbsp

Ghee: 1 tbsp




 1.      Soak rice in water for 30 minutes. Drain the water and keep aside.

2.        Heat a pressure cooker. Add oil+ ghee, cumin seeds,mustard seeds,hing, bay leaf, cloves and       cinnamon. Sauté for 10 seconds.

3.        Add the garlic pods, slit green chilies, peanuts, curry leaves and onions . Fry till the onion turns translucent.

4.      Add the turmeric powder, red chili powder, sprouts , green peas and fry for a couple of minutes.

5.      Add the drained rice and salt, garam masala powder and sauté for a minute.

6.     Add water and mix well, bring it to rolling boil.

7.     Pressure cook for 3 whistles and open after pressure subsides.

8.     Garnish with coriander leaves and drizzle a spoon of ghee and serve with any raita/ papad/ pickle.



You can add water more if you want it more watery.


Posted in easy lunchbox ideas, Easy Rice options, No onion no garlic foods

Coconut Rice

Today being Adiperukku, also known as Pattinettam 18th day of the auspicious Aadi month. Adiperukku is a unique South Indian especially Tamilians celebrate this day with variety rice.

Today I am sharing the recipe of Coconut Rice. Made Lemon RiceCurd rice and Semiya Payasam alongside. This can be made quickly and doesn’t require much ingredients. All you need is some fresh grated coconut and rice and you are good to go with minimal tempering. This makes a good lunchbox idea too. Also left over rice too works well for this. 🙂



Serves: 2


Cooked Rice: 1 1/2 cup

Grated coconut: 1 cup (fresh recommended)

To Temper:

Oil: 1 tbsp

Mustard seeds:1 tsp

Urad dal: 1 tsp

Chana dal: 1 tsp

Cashews: 1 tbsp (optional i haven’t added)

Peanuts: 1 tbsp (optional i haven’t added)

Dry red chili: 2 broken

Curry leaves: a few

Salt as needed


  1. Cook the rice with 2 cups water. Allow to cool.Keep aside.
  2. Heat a pan temper with “to temper” items.
  3. Add the coconut and roast on a low flame till nice aroma wafts. I roasted for 4-6 minutes.
  4. Add the rice and salt and mix gently and allow the flavors to blend for a couple of minutes. Keep the gas in low flame.
  5. Serve with appalams or chips



Note: The only tip for best results is using freshly scrapped coconut as it adds its own sweetness to the recipe.


Happy Aadiperukku to all.. May God bless you all always. 🙂

Posted in easy lunchbox ideas, Easy Rice options, Lunchbox ideas, Paneer Recipes

Tomato paneer rice

Another lunch box idea. Another easy way to use up leftover veggies. The other day i had a layer of paneer too left with me which was too less for a veggie so i incorporated it in the rice. The result was a beautiful rice with nice chunks of paneer. 🙂 Kiddo loved it and now its my go-to recipe.

Here goes the recipe:

Serves: 2




Basmati Rice : 1 cup ( any other rice would also work)

Ripe tomatoes: 2

Pav Bhaji Masala: 1 tsp

Cumin seeds: 1 tsp

Butter+Oil:  1tbsp

Onions: 1 thinly sliced

Carrots: 1 finely chopped (optional)

Paneer: 1 cup toasted in a tsp of butter (see notes)

Salt as needed

Coriander leaves to garnish

Water: 1.5 cups


1. Wash and soak the rice in warm water for 15-30 minutes.

2. Heat a pan, add butter+oil, add the cumin seeds. When crackled, add onions and fry till golden brown.

3. Add the tomatoes and cook til tender, add the carrots and cook till al dente.

4. Add the rice and seasonings and salt as needed and 1.5 cups water.

5. Bring to rolling boil and pressure cook for 3 whistles on medium flame.

6. Once pressure settles , add the paneer and mix gently.

7. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve with any raita and chips of your choice.




Paneer can be toasted in a pan in butter and added or it can be added as it is. Toasted lends a golden look and crispy flavor.

You can add any veggies of your choice. Paneer can be replaced by tofu or even soya to suit your needs.

Posted in Easy Rice options, experiments with rice., No onion no garlic foods

Lemon soya rice

Packing lunch box every day is quite a task. Balanced food + nutrition is an interesting combo. Soya is a rich source of protein for vegetarians. Making soya curry is one way of incorporating. Another is adding them in small quantities in variety rice.

This time i incorporated this magic veggie to the humble lemon rice.Lemon rice or  Chitranna as it is popularly known here is one such meal. The flavors of ginger,lemon and peanuts make it even more lovable. Easy to make for lunch box or a breakfast for people who like eating rice for breakfast. Also great for travels. Combine with a packet of chips or papad and its a heavenly combo.


Here goes the recipe:


Cooked Rice : 1 cup (Old one works best)

Lemon juice: 3 tbsp

Soya granules:  a handful.

To temper”

Oil: 1 tbsp

Mustard seeds: 1 tsp

Chana Dal: 1 tsp

Urad Dal: 1 tsp

Peanuts: 1 tbsp

Green chillies: 1 finely chopped

Ginger: 1/2 inch finely chopped

Turmeric powder: 1 tsp

Salt to taste

To Garnish:

Coriander leaves: a handful finely chopped



  1. Boil the soya and keep aside.
  2. Heat in a pan, add “to temper items”. When crackles, add the rice,turmeric powder and salt.
  3. Mix in the soya and lemon juice and garnish with coriander leaves.
  4. Serve.