Monday, December 7, 2009

Kerala Fried Rice

Serves : 4 to 5

Basmati Rice : 2 cup
Water : 5 cup
Cloves: 3
Cardamom Pods : 4
Cinnamon Stick : 1
Chopped Onions : 1
Salt : To taste
Mixed Vegetables : 2 cups
Green Peas : 1/2 cup
Cashews : a few
Peanuts : a few
Raisins : A few
Craisins : A few
Fried Onions : Enough to garnish
Saffron Water  Soaked : Few drops
Cilantro and Mint Leaves : A few
Olive Oil : 3 tbsp


  1. Soak the basmati rice for 1/2 an hour, and then drain it well.
  2. Cook the vegetables according to package direction and set aside. Powder all the spices together and set aside.
  3. Add 2 tbsp of  olive oil in a suitable pan large enough to cook the rice, and sauté the chopped onions for 5 minutes.
  4. Now add the drained rice and stir until lightly browned, 5 to 6 minutes. Add spices, salt  and water.
  5. Cover and cook for about 30 to 40 minutes. First few minutes on medium high till it starts to boil, then reduce the heat to simmer and cook for the remaining time.
  6. Slightly fry the cashews, peanuts, craisins, and raisins on low heat and set aside.  Fry thinly sliced onions and set aside.  Add all the cooked vegetables to the remaining oil and sauté for few minutes until all the moisture disappears.
  7. Ten minutes before turning off the heat,  add a  few drops of saffron color, followed by the vegetables, fried nuts and onions. Few cilantro leaves and mint leaves can also be added for flavor.  Cover and let it sit for another ten minutes on low heat.  Gently stir before serving.
  8. Serve with chicken curry, lemon pickle, salad, and pappadam.


Always fry the nuts separately in batches.  Do not burn the cashews,  as soon as the color begins to changes take it out of oil and drain on a paper towel. After adding water, taste the water for salt and add more if needed add more. Careful not to break the rice grains while browning, use a wooden spoon and gently stir. Frozen mixed vegetables like beans, carrots, and corn are an easy addition to this dish.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Papaya Erisseri

Raw Green Papaya peeled and cubed : 3 cups
Cherupayar parippu or Moong dal split : 1/3 cup
Water :  4 cups
Grated Coconut divided : 3/4 cup
Cumin seeds : 1/2 tsp
Turmeric : 1/4 tsp
Red Chili Powder : 1/2 tsp
Black pepper powder : a pinch
Salt : To taste
Olive Oil : 1 tbsp
Curry Leaves : A few
Mustard Seeds : 1 tsp
Red Dried Chilies : 3 or 4
Shallots : 2 or 3



  1. Pressure cook the papayas and the dal along with water, salt, a few curry leaves, red chili powder,  turmeric powder, and a pinch of black pepper powder  for three whistles on a medium high heat.
  2. Grind half of the grated coconut  with cumin seeds and make it into a fine paste.
  3. Add the mixture to the pressure cooker and cook for a few minutes on medium low heat till it steams but not boil, and remove from the heat.
  4. In a kadai, add olive oil and splutter some mustard seeds. Into this add curry leaves, thinly sliced shallots, and dried red chilies. Now add the remaining coconut grated into this and brown the coconut on medium heat. Pour the prepared erisseri mixture into this and stir well.  Remove from the heat.
  5. Serve hot with rice and yum! Fish curry, pappadam, and a thoran curry goes very well with this.


Water level should always be enough to cover the ingredients in the pressure cooker plus a  bit more above the level of ingredients for safety. Know your pressure cooker. 

Check for salt content once it is pressure cooked. Always better to add less salt than to regret later. If needed, salt can be added at the end.

This is a thick gravy, if it needs to be runny, add a little more water in step 3.