Bisi Bele Bath | Hot Lentil Rice

Besi Bele Bath is very popular dish, native to Mysore Karnataka. I recently saw a documentary that talks about the origin of this Bisi Bele Bath in the palace of Mysore where this was cooked as a delicacy for the Royals and the Kings and Queens  The early version of the recipe was very simple, mix of Toor dal, Rice and tamarind tempered with golden fried Cashews served piping hot.

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Today’s Bisi Bele bath has taken various forms adapting to the taste of the different palates, but at the core it remains this comfort food for the locals and and others.
The modern day Besi Bele Bath has assorted veggies added to it along with the main ingredient the special powder that gives the dish its uniqueness and which basically defines the taste and flavor of this dish.

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Here is my version of the Bisi Bele Bath with a home made bisi bele bath powder. I had recently made this for a group of 20 and it turned out to be a super hit. It is usually paired with bhoondi and hot Ghee on the top.  Spicy Potato chips or banana chips also goes well with it. Enjoy!

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Bisi Bele Bath | Hot Lentil Rice

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Ingredients:

 Mixed veggies:
– Potato – 1/2 cup
– Beans – 1/2 cup
– Carrot – 3/4th cup
– Peas – 1/2 cup
– Brinjal – 1 cup
– Drumsticks – 1 cup
– Onion – 1/2 cup
( you can add any veggie  of choice – I try to keep the veggies about 2 times my rice- dal combo as veggies will shrink once you cook)
Rice – 1 cup
Dal – 3/4th to 1 cup
Tamarind paste  – 1 to 1 1/2 tbs
Turmeric – 1 tsp.
( I like to keep rice and dal in equal proportions as it gives  good taste and texture to the dish)
To grind :
– Tomato – 1 big
– Onion – 1/2 cup
Bisi Bele Bath powder – 2 -3 tbs
For Seasoning:
Clarified butter/Ghee – 2 -3 tbs ( or do oil and ghee 1/2 and 1/2)
Cashew nuts – 2 tbs
Musturd seeds – 2 tsp
Curry leaves – 10 -15 leaves
Red chilis – 2

Method: 

  1. Pressure cook the rice and dal in Insta-pot or cooker.  I added 3 cups of water to 1 rice/dal mix. So about 6 cups of water for 2 cup rice/dal. Cook it for 4-5 whistle.
  2. Grind the the tomato, onion and bisi-bela-bath powder all together into a smooth paste.
  3.  While the rice is cooking, in a deep bottom pan add little oil and add in the veggies.
  4. Add in the veggies that need longer cooking time first and then the veggies that need lesser time.
  5. Add salt, little turmeric and enough water to cook the veggies soft. 

  6. Once the veggies are 3/4 way cooked add in the tamarind paste and the ground paste and cook the veggies until soft still maintaining its shape.
  7. Adjust water as needed. I like to keep it loose as hot rice will soak a lot of moisture.
  8. Once the rice/dal is done, take it out of the cooker and mash it a bit  when its still hot. This step is key to get that mushy consistency.
  9. Now slowly add the rice to the veggie mix. Once all the rice is added let the mixture come together in low flame for 5 – 10 min.
  10. Turn off the heat and get ingredients to temper .
  11. In a pan heat 2 tbs ghee, once hot add in the rest of the ingredients. Once the cashew turn golden brown add the seasoning to BBB.
  12. Serve hot with a spoon of ghee on the top.

Note:

  • Make sure to mash the rice and dal while it is hot to get the right bisi bela bath consistency.
  • I like to cook rice and veggies separately. I feel cooking together breaks the veggies.
  • Also some simply add the bisi bele bath powder directly to the mix and that works fine. I like the ground version.
  • Make sure the final mix has a bit looser consistency so it does not become too hard when it cools down.
  • Add hot water if you have to add more water after you add the rice to the veggie mix.
  • I made a large quantity for a gathering and the consistency was perfect.

 


 

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