More than 2 billion people in Asia and millions more in Africa and Latin America consume rice, which is their staple diet. Every third person on this universe consume rice in one form or the other. Approximately one billion farmers make their living from rice and though there are over a hundred countries where is rice grown.
In India rice is consumed by the South Indian states and some North Eastern states. Compared to these two, North Indians have lesser rice consumption. Rice is the staple diet of of south Indians. Basic steamed rice with a curry is the usual norm. This basic steamed or boiled rice stands as the base for many flavoured rice dishes. Lemon rice, tamarind rice, tomato rice , biriyani, pulao et al. The list is endless. On top of the list is my dish of the day, Curd Rice.
A bit about Basmati Rice – This is the most commonly used rice not only in India but over the world. Like all other types of rice, this long-grain Indian variety is available in both brown and white forms. Brown basmati rice retains its outer bran layer and typically contains more fiber and nutrients than white basmati rice, which has been milled and stripped of its bran.
Rice has fed more people over a longer period of time than any other crop. Beginning in China and the surrounding areas, its cultivation spread throughout Sri Lanka, and India. It was then passed onto Greece and areas of the Mediterranean. Rice spread throughout Southern Europe and to some of North Africa. Rice could be taken to many parts of the world due to its versatility. It is able to grow in the desert conditions of Saudi Arabia, in the wetland deltas of Southeast Asia and in the flooded rice plains which we are most familiar with.
The journey of rice around the world has been slow, but once it took root it stayed and became a major agricultural and economic product for the people, In the Indian subcontinent more than a quarter of the cultivated land is given to rice. It is a very essential part of the daily meal in the southern and eastern parts of India.
The rice grain is treated with honour in the subcontinent and in Asia as well; for here the failure of the rice crop in not only an economic setback but can create a famine-like situation.
Basmati rice is a unique species of rice that comes from India. Like as all types of rice, basmati has two types: white or brown. It because depending on the extent of the grinding process. In the case of basmati, the aroma it imparts is due to a chemical called 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline, which is found about 90 parts per billion. That’s about 12 times more than other rice types. If Brown basmati rice compared to other types of red rice in nutritional content, contain about 20% fiber than other types of red rice and white basmati rice better, if compared with other types of white rice.
Everyone who has ever cooked basmati rice will feel its distinctive aroma. Basmati rice contains carbohydrates, protein, less fat, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Compared with grain rice plain, basmati rice is low in calories. Basmati rice contains thiamin and niacin, two vitamin B that very valuable for metabolism. A serving also contains 6% of your iron daily value. A cup of basmati rice provides 15 percent of the RDA for niacin, essential for proper blood circulation and digestion. Vitamin B6 helps the body’s metabolic functions and can prevent cardiovascular disease. Vitamin B1 ensure red blood cells healthy and helps the normal functioning of the nervous system. Riboflavin, Pantothenic acid, folate and biotin supplement your vitamin B requirements. Other vitamins including vitamin E antioxidant, vitamin K for blood clotting, and iron for red blood cell maintenance.
There are many ways of making Curd/Yoghurt Rice. After many trial and error , found out this tasty rich way of making it. The richness of yoghurt, milk and cream together with the tempering and finally the pomegranate gives a well balanced flavor to this dish. I cook rice separately. Over cooked rice tastes best for this recipe. Once the water is drained, I boil the rice in milk and cream and keep ready. Adding the yoghurt and tempering bit, I do just before serving. I don’t like the curd rice hot, rather prefer a bit cooled ones.
Boil the milk and cooked rice. Add the cream and slightly mush up the rice to a creamy texture.
Once it reaches normal room temperature, add the yoghurt and salt and combine well.
Heat a pan with oil, first add the mustard seeds. Allow it crackle.
Then add urad dal and then the dried red chillies. Fry till aromatic and chilli turns color.
Then add the green chillies, chopped ginger and curry leaves. Saute till the ginger and chilli turns aromatic.
Add hing and give a quick mix.
Pour the tempering on to the prepared rice. Mix thoroughly and keep closed for a couple of minutes.
Serve with your choice of pickle, pappad and stir fried veggies.