Khara Avalakki / Spicy beaten rice

Avalakki is de-husked beaten flat rice. They are the quick and easy version of rice to work with. All it needs is soaking, and tempering. Your dish is ready in minutes. Mom made this as festival breakfast for as long as I can remember. It also happens to be the dish Hindus eat when they are on a fast. 

What you need: Serves 4
2 cups Thick Avalakki/Poha/Beaten rice
1 medium tomato chopped
1 medium onion chopped
5-7 green chilies slit lengthwise
Juice of 1 lime            
1tsp or more salt
¼ tsp turmeric
Pinch of asefoetida
2 tsp oil
For the tempering: 
Any or all that you can find—2 tsp peanuts, 1tsp whole cashews, 1 tsp channa dhal, 1tsp urad dhal, ½ tsp mustard and cumin seeds, a few curry leaves and some chopped cilantro for the garnish.

Place the Avalakki in a bowl and pour plenty of water, Wash it well and drain the water. Don’t rinse the water out thoroughly. Cover the bowl and let stand for 15 minutes. 

In the meantime, chop the vegetables you need and temper the peanuts.
Heat a wide shallow skillet. Add 2 tsp oil, put in the peanuts and cashew and toss on medium heat till its golden brown, add the channa dhal, curry leaves and cover cooked for just a minute watching it carefully on medium heat. 

Move it onto a small cup and set aside.
In the same pan, on medium heat, add 2 tsp oil, mustard cumin, urad dhal and sesame seeds, cover it till the splattering subsides. 

Add the chopped green chilies and onion and increase the heat to high, constantly working it, watching not to burn, for 1 minute. Add in the chopped tomatoes, and cook until all the watery tomatoes turn into a thick dry mixture. Lower the heat to the lowest setting now. 

Add turmeric, salt and asefoetida. And let it cook for a minute. Now, add the beaten rice, stir gently till the rice takes in the color. Squeeze the juice of lime; take it out of the flame now. Mix in the peanut tempering only before the rice is eaten, this way, the peanuts stay crisp and crunchy, and the rice tastes hot and tangy. Enjoy!             

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