Lemon Rice

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We love rice, since it is the main staple that I had while growing up. I think I am fine if I can get a bowl of rice for my lunch. Dinner without rice was fine. Amma made normal rice everyday and lemon rice occasionally. After I went to Japan to continue my studies in the first few days I don’t know how I survived, eating salad more often. Then one day I discover there is onigiri, which is a rice ball stuffed with veggies or pickle, or fish and covered with crispy roasted sea weed. It was my real savior during my stay there. The taste still lingers in my taste buds.
When started making lunch by myself, making curries was a daunting process for me. During the weekend I would make a few curries and keep it for Monday and Tuesday, and Wednesday onwards, I made mixed vegetable rice, lemon rice, curd rice etc for packing my lunch. If you are staying alone and working from morning to late night, these one pot meals always comes in handy. At that time I had a very few spices in my collection, so I made rice with whatever I had. Now I have an entire cabinet dedicated to spices, I don’t think even my mom had a so much collection of spices.
I pack lunchbox for hubby with spinach rice, mixed vegetable rice, tamarind rice etc. He is not much fan of lemon rice so I rarely make it but I love it a lot. It is really easy to make, if you have cooked rice in your hand. Make a seasoning with mustard seeds, urad dal (spilt black gram), chana dal (spilt chickpeas), cashew nuts, red chili or green chili, salt, lemon juice and gingerly oil. Yes gingerly oil is a must; it brings out the flavor of the rice. Do you know there is a recipe of lemon rice by Mark Bittman in Epicurious, however he used butter? I think butter will not do justice to the recipe that gingerly oil does.
If you want to jazz your left over rice or even try with fresh rice, this is really easy to make dish. Only 5 minutes to spent in the kitchen to get this delicious one pot meal, and it goes well with any soup or chips.

Here comes the recipe.

Lemon Rice


Prep time: 

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Serves: 4 serving

Delicious tangy rice is a great one pot meal too.
  • 2 cup cooked raw rice ( use sona masoori, long grain rice)
  • ½ lemon
  • 1 tablespoon gingerly oil
  • ¼ teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon urad dal ( split black gram)
  • ½ tablespoon chana dal ( split chickpeas)
  • 3 tablespoon cashews ( I used roasted salted one)
  • 1 green chili ( chopped finely)
  • a pinch of asafeotida
  • 1 inch ginger piece ( chopped finely)
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  1. Once you made cooked rice.
  2. In a skillet heat oil, add mustard seeds when it starts popping add urad dal, chana dal ( if using), green chili, ginger. turmeric. asafeotida, and curry leaves, After switching off the flame add lemon juice and salt. Also add roasted cashew nuts.
  3. To this add cooked rice and mix every thing very well. enjoy with chips and curry.
Copyright ©2014 Zesty South Indian Kitchen by Swathi(Ambujom Saraswathy) All Rights Reserved.


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