You might be amazed to find out various ways of cooking rice. Rice can be cooked in so many ways, from a side dish to a one pot rice meal such as fried rice, yogurt rice, biryani, lemon rice, tomato rice, tamarind rice, jeera rice, coconut rice, garlic rice, etc.
Lately I have been in love with par boiled rice aka Poni rice. My friend Laxmi introduced this rice and this recipe to me while I was visiting my mother in Philadelphia over christmas break. Cooking rice is pretty convenient, less time to spend in the kitchen, left over rice can be used in various recipes such as rice tortillas, rice dumplings or kebabs. I used to cook my rice in rice cooker but since I have started using par boiled rice, I prefer the old boiling method and draining excess starch water at end to get more fluffy rice.
Since my friend Laxmi made this recipe, I have been very fond of making it. Lemon rice is easy and quick staple meal. This dish can be done with fresh cooked rice or with left over rice.
2 cups cooked rice
1 medium lemon – squeeze out fresh juice
1 tbsp oil
1 tbsp mustard seeds
1 tbsp channa dal
2 dry red chillies
2 tsp asafoetida (hing)
2 tsp turmeric powder
4-5 curry leaves
Salt to taste
I usually start by washing and soaking rice for at least 1 hour, longer the better. In a deep pan, bring 5 cups of water to boil and add the pre soaked rice and cook on high flame until rice is fluffy and soft. Turn off the flame and let the rice rest for couple of minutes and drain excess water. Keep the cooked rice aside.
In a small bowl, Mix lemon juice, turmeric and salt and set aside.In a medium pan, heat some oil and add mustard seeds and channa dal. Let it splutter then add red chillies, curry leaves, and asafoetida (hing). Turn off the flame and set it aside. In a big bowl, mix all the ingredients with rice, keep mixing until everything is mixed properly. Let all the flavors meld together for couple of minutes prior serving. Serve hot!
P.S. If you are using left over rice, warm for couple of minutes before mixing everything. Let the rice cool down before you mix the ingredients, specially lemon juice. If you add lemon juice mixture to hot rice, it might give you bitter after taste.