I was in a rush to make something quick for lunch and the only vegetable I had in my refrigerator was bell peppers, so I made Bell pepper rice. The recipe is extrapolated from my mother-in-law’s Vangi Bath (Eggplant rice) recipe. It’s quick and easy to make and very yummy. The crispy and colorful green and red bell peppers, the aromatic masala powder along with crunchy bites of peanuts and cashew nuts gives a super taste to this prepared rice.
Bell peppers (red, green,yellow or orange) —3 (any color combination)
Onion –1 (finely chopped)
Mustard seeds –1 Tbsp
Channa Dal — 1 1/2 Tbsp
Curry Leaves –few
Peanuts –3 Tbsp (optional)
Tamarind paste –1/2 tsp
Fennel seeds (saunf/aniseeds/perumjeeragam) —1 tsp
Cinnamon sticks –1/4″ piece
Cardamom — 1
Bay leaf –1
Red Chillies —4
Coriander seeds (Dhania seeds) –1 tsp
Salt — to taste
Turmeric powder — 1/4 tsp
Canola/Vegetable Oil –1 tsp
Gingelly oil (Sesame oil) –1 Tbsp
Cashews –few (for garnishing)– optional
Coriander leaves —few (for garnishing)–optional
Cooked rice — 3 cups
1. In a kadai, dry roast peanuts, if using till golden brown and keep aside.
2. Keep the kadai and dry roast red chillies (use 3 and reserve 1 for tempering), clove, cardamom, cinnamon, bay leaf, and coriander seeds till reddish brown and powder them in to a coarse powder. Keep aside.
3. Wash and cut bell peppers in to small cubes. Heat 1 tsp of canola oil in a kadai, add mustard seeds and let it splutter. Now add 1 red chillies, channa dal, curry leaves and let it fry till the dal turns brown.
4. Add finely chopped onions and fry till they turn translucent. Add chopped bell peppers, peanuts, tamarind paste (if you don’t get tamarind paste, then add thick tamarind pulp), salt and turmeric powder. Cover the lid and let the bell peppers cook.
5. Once the peppers are cooked, add the ground masala powder, and cashew nuts, if using.
6. In a bowl, mix the bell pepper mixture and rice. Adjust salt to taste and garnish with coriander leaves. Enjoy!
Dry roast red chillies, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, bay leaf and dhania.
Grind the masala ingredients into powder.
Sautee mustard seeds, channa dal, red chilli, onion, roasted peanuts, bell peppers, tamarind paste, salt, and turmeric powder.
Add the masala powder and fry for a minute.
Mix with cooked rice, garnish with cashew nuts and coriander leaves. Enjoy!
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