Sunday, May 23, 2010

Rice and Red Lentil Pilaf - Kichiri

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...This is the dish you get when an Irish lass decides to make a wonderful Indian comfort food called kichiri. This is an easy, satisfying and cheap eat. I, however, managed to complicate it with a decision to make ghee, an oil that some call the clarified butter of India. Actually clarified butter and ghee are not the same thing. While there are similarities, ghee is cooked until all moisture is removed and the milk solids in the butter are caramelized. This gives it a rich nutty taste and assures that the "butter" has a long shelf life and a higher smoking point than its counterpart. I have a local source for ghee, but I wanted to attempt making it on my own. My curiosity is now satisfied and ghee is now on my been there, done that list. Vegetable oil or a mixture of one part oil to one part butter can also be used to make this pilaf. As you glance through the recipe you'll see that it is one that you can easily make your own. If you are unable to find red lentils substitute yellow. I will also add some heat the next time I make this pilaf. It is a wonderful accompaniment to curry or eggs. Here's the recipe.

Rice and Red Lentil Pilaf - Kichiri...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite

2 tablespoons ghee, vegetable oil or a mix of butter and oil
6 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 (1-inch) piece ginger, peeled and chopped
1 cup chopped yellow onion
1 teaspoon kosher salt + salt to taste
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 cup long grain white rice
1/2 cup red lentils (masoor dahl)
3 cups vegetable stock
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1) Heat ghee or oil in a large frying pan that has a lid; set over medium-high heat
and warm until oil shimmers. Add garlic and ginger and toss until it is fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in onions and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.
2) Meanwhile, combine salt, cumin, turmeric, coriander and pepper flakes in a small bowl.
3) Stir spice mixture into onions and cook for 1 minute, tossing to make sure everything is combined. Stir in rice and lentils and cook 5 minutes longer. Add vegetable stock and bring to a rolling boil. Stir well, reduce heat, cover pan and cook for 20 minutes. Do not remove lid. Remove pan from heat. Let sit, covered, for 10 minutes. Uncover pan and gently fluff rice with a fork. Stir in cilantro and serve hot or warm. Yield: 4 servings.

You might also enjoy these recipes:
Balti Chicken - One Perfect Bite
Kedgeree - One Perfect Bite
Braised Pork Chops with Homemade Curry and Chutney Sauce - One Perfect Bite


ButterYum said...

Oh Mary - I can't decide which I like better, your photos or your recipes. Exquisite!


chamki said...

Perfectly beautiful colorful cone of rice. You are getting ready for the trip! Ciao

Debinhawaii said...

Making ghee is kind of a big pain isn't it?!--But good you did it once to try. This looks like a great dish!

Angie's Recipes said...

The picture looks gorgeous and I would like to try the recipe too! A very comforting rice dish.

Cherine said...

A beautiful colorful pilaf!

Mary at Deep South Dish said...

A wonderful pilaf - glad you made it through the ghee experiment! ;)

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

I was given a similar recipe like this from a Mauritian woman many years ago and it was tremendous. Diane

Allie and Pattie said...

I'm giggling because now you've put the bug in my ear to attempt making ghee. I always have tons of lentils around- this sounds lovely
xoxo Pattie

Chef E said...

Funny how all those years in the professional kitchen I made clarified butter- only to work for two Indian families and discover it was Ghee and could be purchased so cheaply in Indian markets. Your right the flavor is so good! Love me some rice, love it in the photo with the reflection, now that makes me want it for breakfast today!

Salsa Verde said...

Must be delicious and the presentation outstanding!!

Sandi said...

That looks great the way you have it piled on the plate!

Barbara said...

I love that you have a "been there, done that" list, Mary! I feel that way about quite a few things.
Think I will leave the ghee-making to someone else but I sure love this pilaf recipe. And the photo is mouth-watering!

Jagruti said...

Hi Mary made khichri perfectly..we Indian loves's one potmeal and very healthy..kudos to you you made ghe at home, even we Indians are very lazy to make ghee...:-)

actually I'm making khichdi today with lots lentils, it's too hot here in uk, so don't want to stand near the cooker making chapattis, so just khichri in Pessure cooker with raita...

Sweet and Savory said...

I have made two red lentil recipes recently and we have added it as a regular item. This is the perfect dish for it and yours looks delicious.

Cathy said...

The lentil and rice combination sounds delicious, Mary. This is a must try dish.

tasteofbeirut said...

This is the kind of dishes that we make a lot in lebanese kitchens, minus all the spices; I love it with spices as well and will try your version one of these days. The photo that you took is beautiful as it is not always easy to photograph lentils and rice and make them look good!

My Little Space said...

Now, another clue! So, are you going to Nepal, Tibet & India/Bhudan? I heard that Bhudan is a very origin & beautiful place. Have a nice day!
Cheers, Kristy

Kait said...

Delicious. Congrats on making your own ghee!!

PranisKitchen said...

Mary really delicious indian its known as Pulav also.really delicious one.So u prepared the ghee .homemade ghee is good ..
What are the other places u r planning to visit..Enjoy your vacation and also pls share the experience

From the Kitchen said...

Mary, thanks for coming with me to "Mitford". I enjoyed your good company!

And, thanks for another delicious recipe. I can always count on you. Next time, I hope you'll pack the lunch.


Mary said...

chamki, you are absolutely right:-). Blessings...Mary

Lady Ren said...

I love making Pilaf- So yummy.
I will give yours a try- was looking for things to make with red lentils since I for some reason stick to the green.
Hope you are having a good weekend.

Sushma Mallya said...

healthy and delicious pilaf...loved it..

Joanne said...

I am so impressed that you tried to make your own ghee! I usually just substitute butter and call it a day. This pilaf looks delicious - so much flavor.

pigpigscorner said...

I normally just use butter =P Looks and sounds really flavourful! This is something similar to kedgeree but without the fish.

Mamatkamal said...

Lovely Piaf! You've got gifted hands my friend.
What a shot!
Have a great evening!

Velva said...

Beautiful pilaf dish. Beautiful photo too. Just lovely.

Julie said...

This looks delicious! Love the photo. I've never heard of ghee. Something new learned today! Thanks, Mary!

Jen_from_NJ said...

Homemade ghee - very impressive! Your pilaf is just gorgeous and sounds tasty.

Lori said...

love love rice recipes. I have yet to make ghee. It needs to make it over to my- "been there, done that" list.

Joy said...

This is just how I love kitchri! Light and tasty and healthgiving!

®osadimaggio63 said...

Buongiorno Mary,
questo รจ un ottimo pranzo da essere gustato all'ora di pranzo su di un terrazzo all'ombra :-)
Happy day :-)

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

What a great, versatile dish to serve to vegetarians and meat eaters alike! :D

Eliana said...

Awesome looking side dish!

Arlette said...

what a gorgeous photo my friend, this Kichiri is very similar to our rice and lentil pilaf, which we cook in olive oil and we add caramelized onions and decorate with toasted onions.
A great healthy and delicious meal .

Claudia said...

Rice and lentils always draw me in. Loving the flavors - but I must say your photos makes it doubly enticing.

penny aka jeroxie said...

Thanks for your kind words that you posted on my blog. I am now a very regular reader at yours too. :)

I love the colours and the aromatics that you used. Delicious!

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