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 Ten Tasty Options for the Bowl of Rice That Completes Your Meal

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A meal without a rice bowl on the table seems so incomplete! If you happen to be in South India or Bengal, the rice dish might be the focus of the meal, but even in other parts of the country, at least one rice-based dish is served as part of a full-fledged meal. This is not surprising, considering that rice is known to be one of the oldest cultivated grains in the world, which is still consumed today. With its neutral and pleasing taste, and versatile texture, rice is a boon to the culinary world. It tastes good if had plain, it tastes better with a dollop of ghee, and it tastes truly incredible when cooked into a dish like the Shahi Korma Biryani!

Rice is one of the staple grains of India, and there are numerous varieties available in our country – from the world-famous Basmati rice, which is used for pulaos and biryanis, to the Surti Kolam used for khichdis, the parboiled rice available to make Idli and Dosas, and the innumerable varieties of South Indian rice like Ponni and Sona Masuri.

For most Indians, meals like lunch and dinner generally include at least a cup of rice, along with Rotis and other dishes. Whether it is Ghee Rice with Dal Tadka or Dal Makhani, a Vegetable Pulao with Makhani Gravy or Kadhi, or a more elaborate Biryani with Raita, you do not get complete satisfaction out of the meal unless you have at least a small portion of rice.

Rice can be served plain, with accompaniments like dal, subzis, sambhar and rasam, or it can be prepared into pulaos, biryanis, and baked rice dishes. Whether you want to have something light or heavy, you can find a rice dish to match your requirement…

When the rest of your meal is heavy, you can simply serve Plain Rice, cooked perfectly. It tastes great with dal, kadhi or subzi. Or, like the South Indians, the rice can be mixed with curds and enjoyed with achar. On a day, when you do not have time to make anything else, just resort to a quick but sumptuous one-dish meal like Dal Khichdi or Tomato Rice, which taste good when simply served with a cup of curds, papad and pickles.

On a festive day or to celebrate a special occasion, seek out extraordinary recipes like the Lajjatdar Handi Biryani or Kabuli Chana Biryani. You can also try out regional specialties like the Gatte ka Pulao, which is a Rajasthani delicacy. Rice is also one of the perfect grains to pack in a tiffin box because it does not tend to get rubbery or thick upon cooling. Dishes like Rajma Chawal and Lajjatdar Handi Biryani are awesome dabba treats, which taste great even after a few hours.

Rice is, interestingly, good for our health too. Since time immemorial, rice has been considered a safe food for everybody from babies to elders. It is a wonderful source of energy, and also an essential source of many vitamins and minerals, especially if cooked the right way, without discarding the water. Arguably, the polished version of rice loses vital nutrients when it is processed, but this can be overcome by using brown rice or hand-pounded rice. If there is excess water when cooking the rice, drain the water and use it to thicken gravies or feed it to infants, as it is rich in essential nutrients.

Yes, with its wonderful taste, heritage, cultural importance, health benefits and all, rice is a grain that we must all familiarize ourselves with it. And trust us, once you start exploring the potential of rice, your passion for the rice bowl will only strengthen with each passing day.

Top 10 Indian Rice Recipes

 by Tarla Dalal
Biryani is an everlasting relic of the Moghul era that continues to live and breathe in innumerable restaurants and kitchens across the globe. Not only that, this traditional recipe has stood the test of time by being constantly adapted to suit the tastes of each generation. While many modern ve ....
Bengal gram is abundantly used in Rajasthani cooking because it grows in plenty in the arid desert conditions. Besan made from Bengal gram is used to make rotis, gatta, mithai a ....
When you want the focus to be on the subzi, then this is the best choice for your Main Course . Soothing yet flavourful, the Ghee Rice combines beautifully with elaborate Subzis / Curries and
 by Tarla Dalal
An elaborate yet easy khichdi that makes a wholesome and delicious meal, the Dal Khichdi is made of toovar dal and rice combined with not just whole spices but also onions, garlic and tomatoes. This imparts a tangy twist to the khichdi making it holistic in terms of taste too. When you don’t have ti ....
Long-grained basmati rice, pressure-cooked in tangy tomato-based gravy interspersed with spongy cottage cheese cubes, the paneer pulao is a toothsome treat that will delight your family and friends! Enjoy this pulao as it is or have it with
 by Tarla Dalal
A tangy preparation of rajma is combined with cooked rice to make a lip-smacking Rajma Chawal, which stays fresh in the tiffin box for at least 5 hours. It’s almost like having rice with a rajma curry to accompany it, but the best part is that it comes in a convenient one-dish package that is easy f ....
 by Tarla Dalal
Handi Biryani is absolutely superior to those made with other methods like open or pressure cooking, even though it appears to use similar ingredients. The simple process of sealing the lid with chapati dough and allowing the ingredients to cook within a covered environment makes all the differe ....
Kabuli chana together with tomatoes, curd and spices too gives rise to a lovely gravy that is layered with rice, and microwaved for the flavours to fuse. The rice itself is perked up with whole spices and herbs, which makes the Kabuli Chana Biryani even tastier. While such
 by Tarla Dalal
Truly royal! unlike the traditional method of adding loads of cream, ghee etc. To make this “shahi” recipe, here we use low fat milk and zero-oil. You won’t know the difference… it tastes just as good! i have replaced cream with poppy seeds and cashewnut paste to impart the required richness and fla ....
 by Tarla Dalal
A rice delight that is loaded with veggies and flavoured subtly with a fine choice of spices, the Vegetable Pulao is one dish that is famous all over the world. Within India too, it is so popular that there are umpteen versions, ranging from mild to spicy, and it is available in even tiny restaurant ....
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Ten Tasty Options for the Bowl of Rice That Completes Your Meal
 on 02 Mar 17 02:27 PM

Thanks for the great recipes! I receive your Newsletter/recipes regularly and then pass the easier ones on to the younger people. I have learned a lot about Indian cooking since I''ve been receiving your recipes! Keep up the good you are doing!
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Tarla Dalal    Delighted to hear from you Anneke that our newsletters have increased your knowledge of Indian cooking. Do keep trying More and more recipes and share your feedback. Happy Cooking!!!
02 Mar 17 04:12 PM
Ten Tasty Options for the Bowl of Rice That Completes Your Meal
 on 20 Feb 17 10:53 AM

Yeh tho such hai Indian meal is incomplete without rice. Aacchi recipes aur unki jankari milti hai pe.
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Tarla Dalal    Hi Naveen , we are delighted you loved the article. Please keep posting your thoughts and feedback and review the articles you have loved. Happy Cooking.
20 Feb 17 01:33 PM