Though I am a South Indian, born and brought up in Chennai and the Northern most part of India I have seen is Mumbai :) , when it comes to comfort food, my mind, rather tongue doesn't just stop with South Indian food. I might say avial, rasam are my comfort foods but that doesn't exclude rotis/pulav. With grey weathers in this part of the world, people tend to crave for comfort food rather than a rich/exotic diet. On one such cold day, I thought how would it feel to have some jeera pulav with rajma. When it comes to food, I have no second thoughts and went ahead soaking some rajma for dinner. Good that I had the craving early in the day giving me sufficient time for soaking the rajma. Talk about planning and foresightedness! That always works well between me and my food.
So, here I present to you, my comfort food that is sure to please your palates as well.
One great thing about this is you can finish both in 30 - 45 minutes time.
This is how I do it!
Soak the rice. Quickly slice the onions. Fry them. While it gets cooled, blanch the tomatoes. Grind and fry the paste. While the paste gets fried, puree the tomatoes. Add everything, close the pressure pan and come back to rice and finish it. By this method, you can finish both quickly.
Basmathi rice - 1 cup soaked in 1.5 cups water for 15 to 30 min
Jeera - 1.5 tablespoon ( A little less if you do not like too much jeera and just need some flavour)
Ghee - 3 tsp
oil - 1 tsp
Slit green chillis - 2
Cloves, Cardamom - 2 each
Cinnamon - a small piece (I am not fond of this flavour. May be you can add a little more if you like it)
Salt to taste
1) Add 2 tsp of butter/ghee/oil (a combination of this or just one), add 3C(clove,cinnamon,cardamom) and fry for 15 sec.
2) Add jeera, green chillies and fry for 10 sec. (You can also add onions, sliced lengthwise)
3) Add the rice and fry for a min. Now pour the water in which you soaked the rice. Cover the pan and cook for 3 min. When the water boils, add salt.
4) Cover again and cook till the water is absorbed and the rice gets cooked. (will not take more than 10 min over medium flame) Switch off the flame.
5) Add a little ghee. Wait for some time and mix well without breaking the rice.
You can garnish with chopped cilantro.
Serve hot with rajma or any gravy of your choice. Plain curd will also suffice.
Rajma 1 cup soaked overnight
Tomatoes - 4 (blanched and pureed)
Garlic 2 pods
Ginger a small piece
Green chillies 4
Cinnamon stick a small piece
Cloves,cardamom 2 each
Cumin - 2 tsp
Turmeric powder, Chilli powder, Dhania powder - 1 to 2 tsp each
Water 3 cups
Ghee/ Oil for frying (a combination would be nice)
Salt to taste
Cilantro to garnish
1) Add a little oil. Fry cloves, cardamom, cinnamon. Add sliced onions and fry till dark brown.
Grind this with ginger, green chillies and garlic. I am frying the onions to get rid of the bitter taste. If you are confident that your raw onions will not turn bitter on grinding, you can simply grind and skip frying. While grinding make sure that you get a smooth paste. The cardomom and cloves should be ground properly. If you have bits of those while eating, it can be really irritating.
Alternatively, fry the spices separately, make a fine powder and add it to the gravy at the end.
2) Now, heat ghee & oil in a pressure pan, season with jeera and add the ground paste. Fry well. The frying time will vary between raw onion and fried onion paste. Once it turns golden brown, add the tomato puree.
3) Add turmeric, dhania powder and chilli powder. Now add rajma with water and pressure cook for 6 to 8 whistles.
4) Add salt. If you have the spice powder, add it now. You can also add a little garam masala if you like. In case any case, boil for 2 min. You can add more water if you think you need it. In that case boil till everything comes together.
5) Garnish with chopped cilantro and fresh cream.
Serve hot with rotis/ pulav varieties. Tastes heavenly with jeera pulav.
Though the method appears big, this is quite simple to make.
I have a secret to share! I just added a handful of black urad dhal to my rajma. Got inspired from dal makhani.
Sending this to My Legume Affair- Eighteenth Helping @ Srivalli's blog.
This event is initiated by Susan, The well-seasoned cook.