What you need: Serves 4
3 cups cooked, warm or cold rice
1 cup onion, diced
1 cup fresh or frozen peas
1 cup green or red peppers/ capsicum diced
1 Tbsp thick tamarind paste
2 tsp vangibath powder (store bought or made from fresh, recipe below)
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp brown sugar
Salt to taste
2 Tbsp oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
4 dry red chillies
1/8 tsp hing/asafoetida
A sprig of curry leaves
If you are making the powder from scratch, follow this recipe.
Vangibath powder recipe:
1 Tbsp dried coconut powder
6 red hot dried chilies (Indian byaadge chillies work great)
1 Tbsp coriander seeds
1 Tbsp Chana dal/ split Bengal gram
2 tsp Urad dal / split black lentils
1/2 tsp poppy seeds
1/2 tsp sesame seeds
1″ cinnamon stick
2 cardamom pods
1 tsp ghee/ clarified butter
Roast all the vangibath powder ingredients (except dry coconut) in a shallow pan with a tsp of ghee. Stir the ingredients constantly on medium heat until you smell the aroma of lentils and toasted chilies. Turn off, toss the coconut and let the mixture cool completely. Add the ingredients in a blender, grinding it to a coarse dry powder. Set aside. Use it to make the recipe below. Store the remaining in an airtight container or ziploc. You can use it again or sprinkle it on stir fries, tastes yum.
In the same pan, add oil. Once the oil begins to smoke, toss in the mustard seeds, curry leaves and red chillies, Saute for a minute. Add onions and green peas. Saute for 2 minutes on medium high. Add the green peppers and saute for 2 more minutes until the peppers soften.
Add the turmeric powder, vangibath powder, sugar, salt and hing. Mix well. Once the mixture starts to get dry, add the tamarind paste.
Cover the pan and cook the mixture on low for just a few minutes until the mixture starts to leave oil on the sides of the pan. Turn off the heat. You can mix this mixture into the rice and serve. You can add more or less of this gojju (thick mixture) to make the rice as rich and spicy as you want.
If any gojju remains, store it in the fridge and reuse it within a week.
Optional: You can garnish he rice with roasted cashews or peanuts if you like. Top the rice with finely chopped cilantro. Enjoy!