Today, I am sharing a very popular and tasty recipe from South India. My mother makes this rice frequently and I am remembering my school days of relishing it in my tiffin box.
Interestingly, even my husband fondly remembers this rice as his 'tiffin box ' favourite. Tomato Rice or "Thakkali Saadam " in Tamil, tastes so good especially when eaten cold as the rice absorbs the flavours with time.
It is so convienient to make for tiffin box as there is hardly any preparation and very little cooking time.
A tangy vegetable rice that is also ideal for parties, picnics and lazy sundays!!!
North Arcot Style Thakkali Saadam | Tomato Rice :
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time : 20 minutes
1 Cup = 250 ml
1 Cup Raw Rice ( Use Ponni or Sona Masoori Variety)
4 Ripe Large Tomatoes ( 2 Finely chopped, 2 roughly chopped)
2 Red Onions ( 1 Thinly Sliced, 1 roughly chopped)
6 Dry Red Chillies ( I used Guntur Variety )
1/2 teaspoon Kashmiri Chilli Powder
1 teaspoon Ginger Garlic Paste ( Use freshly ground paste, use the mortar and pestle )
1 Bay leaf
1" cinnamon piece ( roughly broken)
1 Green Cardamom
1 Sprig Curry leaves
2 tablespoon Sesame Oil ( divided)
Salt to taste
1. Boil Rice in such a way that it is not mushy. I usually use 1:2 , Rice : Water to get the right consistency. But this will differ according to the rice you are using. Once the rice is done, transfer it to a wide plate/ vessel .
2. In a heavy bottom wide pan or Wok , heat 1 teaspoon oil and add red chillies , 2 roughly chopped tomatoes and one roughly chopped Onion and saute' them till the onions change colour and the raw smell of tomatoes dissappear. This will take approximately 5 minutes.
3. Cool this mixture and grind it to a fine paste.
4. Heat the same pan , heat the remaining oil and temper with mustard seeds and curry leaves. When they splutter add the ginger garlic paste, Whole Masala and saute' them for one minute.
5. Now add the remaining 2 tomatoes ( finely Chopped) and the thinly sliced onion . Add salt, mix and saute' them for 2 to 3 minutes.
6. Add the ground paste and the Chilli powder. Mix well. Partially cover the pan and cook for 5 to 7 minutes occasionally stirring the mixture.
7. You will see the oil on the sides of the pan. Switch off.
8. Pour this mixture over the rice and mix well.
TIP: If you are preparing for a party or picnic, you can do an additional tempering of groundnuts or cashewnuts in a teaspoon of oil. Add some fresh curry leaves in the tempering for additional flavour.
Poppadoms / Vadam/ Potato Chips compliment this yummy rice and I often make a raita ( yoghurt sauce) and that makes a complete meal .
If you are making it on Pooja days or if you are on a 'No Onion- Garlic 'diet , you can omit them and the rice tastes equally good.