Red Rice Pohe with Cauliflower & Green Pea
Isn’t it amazing that you can eat a particular food all your life not knowing how it is made?
One of the many advantages of food blogging is the number of new things I learn on a regular basis.
When I sit down to write a post, I like to look up information about the dish or its key ingredients on the internet. Although most times this research is retrospective – after the meal has been cooked and consumed – it is still useful to know and share with fellow kooky cooks.
today’s recipe is one such example of new learning
Rice flakes are also known as flattened rice or beaten rice or pohe. For convenience’s sake, I will refer to them as pohe in this post.
Pohe is a staple across India and in Bangladesh and Nepal. It can be used in sweet and savoury dishes.
Till now, I had assumed that pohe was nothing but unprocessed rice which was beaten or flattened. Not so.
According to LiveStrong, “Rice flakes undergo more processing than any other type of rice. Processing begins by parboiling to partially cook the rice via steaming, followed by a process of rolling, flattening and finally, dehydration. The result is “rice” with a soft, mushy texture when cooked and a taste so mild it borders on bland.”
So pohe are processed after all which explains why they cook so fast. Have just experienced one of those “doh” moments!
Previously, I have posted an unconventional pohe recipe so today, I would like to share a traditional Maharashtrian one (except for my kooky addition of cauliflower and green pea) and also a simple trick to avoid lumpy pohe.
A friend told me that to ensure that your pohe doesn’t clump while cooking, put them dry in a colander, give the colander a good shake to rid the pohe of any floury bits, rinse them in the same colander and let them drain. I have been cooking my pohe this way ever since and each flake stays separate.
Today’s recipe was made using red rice pohe but you can use white or brown pohe or even try it with leftover boiled rice.
The list of ingredients may seem long but this is one of those quick cook meals.
1 Cup dry pohe
1/2 Cup green pea
1/2 Cup chopped cauliflower (including leaves and stalk if tender)
10-15 Fresh curry leaves
1 Cup fresh coriander
2-3 Green chillies
A piece of fresh ginger the size of your thumb
2 Tablespoons grated coconut
1 Teaspoon mustard seeds
1 Teaspoon cumin seeds
1 Teaspoon asafoetida
1 Teaspoon turmeric powder
2 Tablespoons raw peanuts
Juice of a lime or lemon
1 Tablespoon oil
Salt to taste
- Put the pohe in a colander. Give the colander a good shake and rinse the pohe under running water.
- Set aside and make sure there is enough space between the bottom of the colander and the kitchen platform for any excess water to drain away.
- Wash green pea and cauliflower.
- Peel, wash and finely chop the onion.
- Wash the curry leaves.
- Chop and wash the fresh coriander.
- Wash and finely slice the chilli.
- Peel, wash and grate the ginger.
- Heat oil in a wok-like pan.
- Lower the heat and add mustard seeds and once they start crackling, add cumin seeds.
- Next, add the asafoetida, peanuts and curry leaves.
- Stir for about a minute or so.
- Add the chopped onions, chilli and grated ginger.
- Sprinkle turmeric powder and salt to taste.
- Cover and cook on low flame for 5 to 7 minutes till the onion turns translucent.
- Add green pea, cauliflower and lemon juice.
- Once again, mix well, cover and cook for about 5 to 7 minutes. At the end of this cooking stage, you want the cauliflower a little undercooked. It should have some bite to it because it will be cooking a bit more once the pohe have been added.
- Next, add the pohe, coriander and coconut to the vegetable mixture.
- Mix well, cover and cook for about 8 to 10 minutes.
- Serve hot.
- You can adjust the quantity of green chilli and lemon juice according to personal preference.
- If you can’t get hold of fresh coconut, use dessicated coconut.