Curd rice or Thayir Sadam

7:34 AM

Summer is upon us at its full throttle. Too soon I say as I still am confused how come the weather took such a sharp turn. Maybe I was too busy with the kiddo's exams, my first Pop-up (will post about it later), a competition I took part in Mumbai and the painting work at home that I forgot to notice when the weather warmed up and became nasty. Gone are the days to walk long miles early in the morning and looking up to the mellow winter sun to warm up our cheeks and hands. 

Now that the schools have reopened and my long vacation at home in Santiniketan is over I sit back and reflect on how wonderful winter had been this year. We loved and cherished every moment and hope to do that in this scorching summer too. So here I am churning out simple meals to give our body time to adjust to the changing season and stay cool and homemade yogurt is my first bet for such dishes. A powerhouse of important calcium, B vitamins, minerals and nutrients this also has cooling properties and aids in digestion. 

As a family, we love this Curd rice or tempered and spiced mixture of yogurt and rice with Curd chilies (read more in the notes) and papad. This simple recipe from Down South is as simple as ABC but very high on flavour, taste, and comfort.

Please note that the rice should be cooked little softer than normal for this dish,  leftover works really well in this (see Notes). I used Rani Akanda rice from Amar Khamar for this you can use any other non-fragrant fine rice variety for this.

Curd rice
(serves 2)

Cooked rice: 2 cups OR
Cook 1/2 cup short grain rice till little soft. Follow either the absorption method or boil and strain method like cooking pasta

Yogurt: 1 cup (fresh homemade, slightly tart works best)
Milk: 1/4 cup
Green chillies: 1 (finely chopped)
Salt as per taste

For tempering-
White oil: 2 tsp
Curry leaves: 3 sprigs
Mustard seeds: 1/2 tsp
Chana dal: 1 tsp
Hing or Asafetida: a fat pinch

Pomegranate arils for serving

Take the rice in a big bowl and add beaten yogurt to it. Mix. Add milk, chopped chilly and salt as per taste and mix. Keep aside.

Heat the oil and add the chana dal. Cook on medium till it's golden add mustard seeds and let it splutter. Add the curry leaves and hing. Take off heat and add to the rice. Mix well. Adjust seasoning.

Serve with pomegranate arils and deep fried curd chilies and Papad. 

A Homemaker's notes:
1. If using leftover rice Reheat the rice with little water (2 cups rice with 2 tbsp water) in a microwave for 3 minutes. This will steam the rice, make it soft for it to absorb the yogurt and spices better. 

2. Curd chilies or Mor Milagai ar South Indian style Condiment where the fresh green chilies are soaked in spiced yogurt for a day or two and then sundried. The resulting chilies have less heat and when deep fried are wonderfully crunchy and tart. A perfect accompaniment to any rice dish.

3. You can also add chopped ginger to the mixture but I avoid ginger in summer for its heating property.

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