We have a rice grain which is perfect for the body’s every need, want or craving. Now how many cultures can say that? We have that many indigenous rice grains, more than 2000 (at this point ) And what do we do ??... call rice ‘a bad carb’.
Seriously! We have a lot of food-learning to do. First we have to start with the Western concept of ‘healthy’. A kale salad and steamed protein is great for the country where it is grown. We need to eat what grows here. Not oats, quinoa, chia are nice, as an offbeat exploration. Not as an everyday food in India, which is the land of rice and millets. #RiceIsNice
The excessively polished white grain is just an artificial food which resembles the heritage rice grains which grow in our country. It’s a waste of calories and money.
We have so many kinds of heirloom rice grains in various colours. Rice can also be a source of protein, zinc, magnesium, calcium, iron, phosphorus, manganese and vitamin B. So where did the ‘bad carbs ‘ story originate ??...with the polished, refined varieties !
Just like a Mughal biriyani carries the aroma of a heirloom basmati grain, we also have rice that is meant to be eaten when we are sick. The best way to recover from a fever is to keep digestion light and allow the body to use the energy to combat the illness. The red Navara rice grain is a medicinal rice which is given when someone is ill. This is perfect for all age groups. The rice is soaked for half an hour with whole green moong and then cooked with lots of water to a soupy consistency.
Even a sick person needs to taste what they eat. Aside from salt, turmeric powder and black peppercorns, a mix of ingredients like ginger, curry leaves, small onions and cumin is tempered with a small amount of cold pressed oil and added to the rice kanji.
A warm bowl of this keeps the belly satiated and also provides nourishment which can be easily absorbed to aid recovery.
Do you know what other medicinal rice varieties grow in our country?
Comment below. Let’s share and document vital information for posterity…it’s like nurturing a food forest in words.
Navara rice -1/2C
Green moong -1/2C
Water - 5 C
Small onions - 1/4 C - crushed
Ginger - 1 inch cut into thin shreds
Black peppercorns -1 tsp
Turmeric powder - ½ tsp
Salt to taste
Curry leaves - 6-8
Asafoetida - a pinch
Wash and soak the rice and dal for half an hour.
Add to a pressure cooker with black peppercorns, a pinch of salt and turmeric powder.
Add 5 C water and allow it to come to a boil
Close the lid, add the weight and cook for 5-6 whistles.
Let the pressure settle on its own
Open the lid and check if the rice and dal have turned mushy. This helps in easy digestion.
Add salt to taste.
Next, add ghee or oil to a small kadai
When hot, add the asafoetida and curry leaves.
Add the crushed onions and ginger and cook until soft.
Add this to the navara rice kanji.
It can also be served on the side based on the patient’s preference.
Place it in a pretty tray which will make the sick person feel happier.
Mental wellness is the key to quick recovery.
Check out our exclusive native variety of rice -