Sunday, March 09, 2008

Bisi Bele Hulli Anna for Meeta's Monthly Mingle.

I am a one dish dinners person, there is no denying that.. there are times that I go the whole roti-subzi, daal- rice deal, but one dish meals are perfect for weekdays. Tired and beat, just put together a few things and that's it.. not just lessens cooking time, more importantly cleaning up time!

When Meeta announced MM- One dish Meals, I knew just what I wanted to make. This dish makes its appearance very often on our dinner table.. but with variations every time! Nevertheless, I felt that the Monthly Mingle deserves special attention and decided to go all the way with a long and involved recipe. Relying on Chandra Padmanabhan's Dakshin, I tried out a 'new' type of Bisi Bele Hulli Anna.
South Indian cuisine is distinguished by its liberal use of Rice and not to forget coconut! But coconut is not a very popular item with M, he dislikes it and just about tolerates it in a typical dish!
This meal has everything, rice, daal, vegetables.. as I said, everything for a power packed meal. the best part is, it tastes better the next day (and with the mentioned quantities, it will feed a good 6 people!) So if you try this method, be prepared for leftovers or halve the quantity.

You need:
1 cup Toor Daal
1 cup Basmati Rice
4 1/2 cups Water
1 lime size piece of Tamarind pulp
2 cups Hot Water
½ cup chopped shallots
1 Bell pepper finely chopped
1 small eggplant finely chopped
2 tbsp Green peas (optional)
1 Potato diced
½ tsp turmeric
Salt to taste
6 Tbsp Ghee
Cilantro to garnish

For the Paste:
4 tsp Oil
3 tbsp Coriander seeds
1 inch Cinnamon stick
3 tsp Chana Daal
1 ½ tsp Poppy seeds
4 cloves
½ tsp Methi / Fenugreek seeds
½ Coconut grated (or ½ cup flaked coconut)
1 tsp Asafetida powder
Little water

Dry Masala:
3 tbsp Fried Gram daal / Dalia
1 ½ tsp Poppy seeds
3 tsp uncooked Rice
2 -3 tbsp fresh / flaked coconut
For Tempering:
2 tbsp Oil
1 tsp Mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tbsp each Chana Daal & Urid Daal
1 Red Chilli
Few curry leaves

Rinse rice and toor daal and cover with 4 ½ cups water and set it to cook (stove top method). ( I used a shortcut, I pressure cooked the rice and daal) do not drain any excess water if using stove top method.
For the paste: Heat oil in a heavy frying pan, add red chillies, coriander seeds, cinnamon, chana daal, poppy seeds, cloves, fenugreek seeds, coconut and asafetida. Sauté for 2-3 mins. Place in blender , add little water and make a fine paste (or place all the dry ingredients in a spice grinder and grind to a powder)
For the Masala: In a heavy saucepan, dry roast the dalia, poppy seeds, rice, coconut for about 5 mins or till fragrant. Cool and make a powder.
Soak the tamarind in the hot water for 15 mins, squeeze out all the pulp and discard solids. Set aside
Tempering: In a heavy sauce pan, heat oil. Add mustard seeds, cumin, chana and urid daal, red chilli and curry leaves.
When the mustard seeds sputter, add the chopped shallots, sauté for 2-3 mins. Add the bell pepper, eggplant potatoes and peas (if using). Sauté until the vegetables are partially cooked. Add tamarind juice, turmeric and salt to taste. Cook till vegetables are tender. Add the paste and cook for a few mins. Gradually add the rice and daal mixture, ensure that there are no lumps formed. Simmer on low heat. Add the ghee, cook till thoroughly blended.
Lastly add the dry masala. Remove from the stove top.
Garnish with cilantro, serve hot with fried papad as an accompaniment.

This procedure is long drawn out, and therefore aptly a one-dish meal!!! However the end result is very satisfying.
P.S: there have been times I have skipped all these steps and also totally changed what BBB means.. I have added rice to normal sambar and cooked it for a quick ,no-fuss version of BBB!! MTR band has a mix that also is very yum. and not to mention quick!
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  1. I know this is one dish that's satisfying. Pair it up with yogurt and pappad/ appalam, and it's heavenly.
    Have made it any number of times from that very book!
    Thanks for dropping by.

  2. It looks so good, Manasi! I so want to have this right now,but I'll have to make do with some frozen parathas instead.:(
    BTW, love your cute bowl.:D

  3. Lovely rice, Mansi! My all time fav. great entry.

  4. Aw. You are flaunting your bowl ;). Sweet.

  5. looks so yummy manasi!must try one...

  6. Looks delicious.
    I also love one pot dishes.

  7. I love bisi bele huli anna. Yours looks absolutely delicious!

  8. Lovely dish in a really cute bowl :). So true, this dish has got all that you need for a complete meal! I love Bisi bele baath with some masala mixture with rice crispies to top it.

  9. Nice one girl! I'm yet to try a hand at this...but your pic seems inspiring:)

  10. nice entry for MM . I also posted it jsut today on my blog for event posts :) .

  11. Nice one, i love this dish and my family favorite, goes well with fresh potato chips :)

  12. umm..BBB is my fav.I have my version on my blog. Your version looks great! Nice entry for the event.

  13. oh, this is our fav dish too!!! Naveen can have it morning, noon, night!!! your looks gr8!!

  14. this is one of the mostttttt comforting onepot meal yummyyyyyy

  15. this is one of the mostttttt comforting onepot meal yummyyyyyy

  16. Ah ha! Now this is a one-dish meal. Full of flavour, full of taste and completely satisfying.

  17. The BBB looks Yummy....I love this with some sandiges....Actually this is one dish which tastes very good the next day

  18. This is out of the world. I love the bowl too. Thank you for the entry.

  19. Thank U for all your lovely comments!! The bowl was a gift from a friend during Sankranti! I'm so glad I used it here!!


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