Bisibele Bath

Bisi bele bath is a famous dish from Karnataka. As the name suggests the rice consists of dhal and is served piping hot. Some call it as bisi bela huli anna. As tamarind is also added to the rice it is called so. What ever the name is, we are great fans of this delicious flavourful rice. When we lived in Mysore, our neighbour Latha aunty once came to the house and prepared this rice in order to teach mom. From that day onwards, mom prepares it often. Even when aunts come home for vacation, mom used to prepare this in large aluminium pot. The whole day we will be relishing it along with kaara boondhi on top. After my marriage, mom never prepared this and so K haven't tasted it at all. After I started writing the blog, I have this recipe in mind. But as I was not so confident of getting it right, I postponed it. Last week, I asked my mom for the recipe. She usually takes all the ingredients by hand and judges by eye and adds it to the dish. So she wasn't able to give me the accurate measurements. But I converted what she gave me into tablespoon measurements. Today I started preparing it. Once I prepared the spice powder, I could smell bisi bele bath. It was so nostalgic. When ever mom prepares the spice powder, I used to ask her if the bisi bele bath is ready. Though the end result was not upto mom's preparation, I was satisfied with my first attempt. I have been thinking of my college days. K once told me that he tried this anna in a hotel and he didn't like it. I told him that what I am going to prepare will taste great and any hotel dish can't be compared with it. When he came home, with my fingers crossed, I served him the bisibele bath topped with kaara boondhi. When he took a smell of it, he told that he could smell the air of Karnataka in the dish and so this would surely be delicious. Then he tasted it and was so happy that I prepared such an wonderful dish.

Toor Dhal-1/2cup/100gm
Vegetables-500gm (I used 1 carrot, 1 radish, 5-6 beans, 1 capsicum, 100gm of green peas and 1 potato)
Tamarind- a small lemon sized ball
Salt-to taste
Turmeric Powder-1/2tsp
Mustard Seeds-1tsp
Marati Moggu-2-3
Grated Copra-1cup
Coriander Leaves-1/4cup (finely chopped)

For The Spice Powder:
Khus Khus/ Poppy Seeds-1tbs
Coriander Seeds-2tbs
Red Chilly-8-10
Methi/ Fenugreek Seeds-1/2tsp
Channa Dhal-1tbs
Urad Dhal-1tbs

1. Heat ghee and roast all the ingredients given for the spice powder until golden and aromatic.
2. Grind it to a fine powder and keep it aside.
3. In a pressure cooker, add toor dhal, vegetables, tomatoes, turmeric powder and 1 tbs of oil along with 2 1/2cups of water.
4. When the whistle blows, simmer and cook for 5 minutes.
5. When the pressure reduces open the lid and give a nice mash with the back of a ladle.
6. Heat oil in a heavy bottomed vessel (use a large pan) and add mustard and marati moggu.
7. When they crackle, add onions and saute until golden.
8. Add 5cups of water and bring it to boil.
9. When it boils add washed and drained rice.
10. Cook it on medium flame with the pan covered until the rice is fully cooked.
11. Add the cooked dhal vegetable mixture to the rice and mix well. After adding dhal you should be very careful because the dhal sticks to the bottom if unattended.
12. Cook until the whole mixture turns mushy, stirring often to prevent sticking.
13. Extract juice from the tamarind. Add it along with salt and cook for a further 5minutes on medium flame.
14. Grate copra and keep it ready.
15. When the rice becomes mushy and tamarind smell is gone, add the spice powder and cook for a minute.
16. Add the copra and coriander leaves, give a final mix and remove from flame. The rice will be slightly runny when hot. 
17. Serve it hot topped with kaara boondhi.

P.S: To make copra at home, keep the two halves of a coconut in fridge. It will dry and become copra in a month. Use it if you don't get copra at your place. 

The flavourful spice powder

Add vegetables, dhal, turmeric and 1tsp of oil along with 2 1/2 cups of water in a pressure cooker.

Dried coconut in shell. The copra comes out of the shell easily.

Grate it using a copra grater.

Once cooked, mash it with the back of a ladle.

Cook rice until done

Add the dhal mixture and mix well

Add tamarind juice and salt

Add the spice powder

Add copra and coriander leaves, mix well and serve.
Linking this to Walk Through Memory Lane Event started by me and hosted by Pradnya. 

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