The ultimate Indian comfort food: Leftover rice is combined with beaten yogurt and topped with a sizzling tempering of curry leaves, mustard seeds and red chilis. This recipe uses whipped yogurt: Place the yogurt in a bowl and use a fork to mix it well. This incorporates the milk part with the whey and gives a smooth consistency to the yogurt.
Makes 6 servings, 1/2 cup per person
2 cups basmati rice
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup plain low-fat yogurt, whipped
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup diced green mango
2 tablespoons minced cilantro
2 tablespoons clarified butter (ghee) or vegetable oil
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
2 whole dried red chilies, any size
15 to 20 curry leaves (available at Indian markets)
1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and julienned
1/4 cup unsalted raw cashews
Rinse rice at least twice, until the water runs clear. Drain well.
Bring rice and 4 cups fresh water to a boil in a deep saucepan. Add salt and oil. Reduce heat to low and loosely cover. Cook 12 to 15 minutes, until all the water has been absorbed. You will see small craters forming on top of the rice.
Remove from heat. Let cool to room temperature, about 2 hours.
Combine rice with the yogurt, buttermilk, green mango and cilantro. Mix well and place in a serving bowl.
Heat clarified butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add mustard seeds. When they begin to sputter, in quick succession, add the chilies, curry leaves, ginger and cashews. Mix well. Saute 1 minute, until the cashews begin to brown.
Pour spice mixture over the rice. Serve immediately.