Lemon Rice (Nimbu Wale Chawal)
3 tablespoons Clarified Butter (page 15) or vegetable oil
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
8 fresh curry leaves
3 dried red chilies, broken
2 tablespoons unsalted peanuts
Table salt, to taste
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Fresh grated coconut, for garnish
Prep Time: 5–10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
This is a great way to perk up leftover rice. Enjoy a Maharastrian Buttermilk (page 44) drink alongside.
1. If you are using Simple Basmati Rice that has been prepared earlier and refrigerated, warm it for a few minutes before proceeding.
2. In a large skillet, heat the butter. Add the mustard seeds. When they begin to sputter, in quick succession add the curry leaves, red chilies, and peanuts. Sauté for 1 minute. Add the salt and turmeric; mix well.
3. Add the lemon juice. It will splatter a bit, so do this carefully. Add the rice and salt; sauté for 1 minute, mixing well to evenly coat the rice with the spice mix. Serve hot garnished with fresh grated coconut.
Rice and the Hindu Religion
In India, rice has a special religious significance. It is considered a symbol of fertility and prosperity. Hindu weddings use rice for many rituals. When a new bride enters her husband's home for the first time, she gently taps, with her foot, a small urn containing rice, over the threshold. This signifies that the new bride will bring wealth and prosperity to the family.