Before I proceed with today's dialogue, I need you to know that it began, complete with pictures, a month and a half ago. Those of you who have followed my recipe writing for the past 5 years know that I possess neither the multitasking skills nor the high diligence of a disciplined food blogger. So this is not much surprise to you...the same song, my anthem on repeat.
It is a subject that has been on my mind waiting to get expelled onto screen, in, like, forever. That it has not reached blogger gates until today, is quite the anomaly because it's the dependable 30 minute rice that's, several days of the week, on my table, in my refrigerator, and packed for kid lunches. My keenness in getting it here, no matter how slow spanning it was, should be applauded. Don't you think?
Honestly, I wanted you to eat curd rice in October. Of course, it's November and I know the delay can be as much dismaying to myself as it is to you (I'm right, right?). Though, on the bright side, this is the best example of comfort food and I'm delivering it at the start of a season where we often desire comfort in our food, as well as everywhere else, more than any other time of the year.
Yoghurt/curd rice, colloquially known, as thayir sadam ( tha-year saah-th-um) originally comes from a part of India that can claim bragging rights for paperiest dosa, the real indigenous lungi dance and a magnificent number of brilliant, technically skilled minds.
Creamy, white and seasoned just enough, it's the onepot meal, which is an entity all to itself, perhaps the stuff legends would beckon for if its versatility hadn't been played down so much. It may often be frowned upon and considered an afterthought of leftover dinner food and curdled milk, and perhaps, not so chic-ish as a thicked-on biriyani. Still, t.sadam can be made with as much love, devotion and foresight to take it from commonplace to regal in a matter of minutes.
Rice that gets all glo'd up before its transcendence is always a prescription for success. Yoghurt crescendos the performance, and despite its volume, turns the end into an incredibly light yet immensely satisfying meal. Where else can you find the dual feast advantage of gratifying tastebuds and cooling your tummy at the same time?
Experiment people. Thayir sadam is wonderful on it's own. But when strategically placed next to a sidecar curry, sadam turns astounding. Try it with beef. Try it with pork. Try it chicken. Try it with lentils and totally vegan.
Wasn't it worth the wait?
With fish curry, for which I need to give you a recipe. Soon.Ingredients:
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 small onion, chopped fine
- 1 tsp ginger, minced
- 1-2 jalapeno peppers, diced
- 1-2 dry red chiles, broken in half
- 1 tsp masoor dal/orange lentils
- 1 sprig curry leaves
- 2 ½ c cooked white rice(I use basmati)
- 2 cups plain lowfat yoghurt
- ½ cup milk
- Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard leaves, and onions,
- Saute onions until light brown and wilted.
- Stir in ginger, jalapeno, red chiles. Stir to cook through.
- Add masoor dal and allow to crisp up for about half a minute.
- Add curry leaves.
- Turn off heat.
- Stir in rice and salt. Combine well.
- Whip yoghurt and milk together until you get a smooth consistency.
- Stir yoghurt/milk mixture into seasoned rice thoroughly.
- You can mash the rice and yoghurt with a large spoon or ladle to give it a softer, creamier texture.
The rice I make most weeks, a regular feature, with eager leftover potential. The kind that changes a monotonous lunchpacking life.