Monday, November 28, 2016

Cranberry Rice

Fall.....I love this season. Varieties of harvest vegetables,  especially, pumpkins and squashes can be seen in the markets. Varieties of apples and beans (podded) can be spotted in farmer's markets and supermarkets. Fall is filled with goodness - my very special goody is cranberries. They are very sour but very healthy. I use fresh cranberries in many ways in my cooking. I make sambhar, gravies, pickles, etc with this small sour gem. I try and use them instead of tamarind in south Indian cooking. I do make cranberry rice similar to puliyodharai (aka tamarind rice) which is one of our favorites. Cranberry cooks faster and it is very easy to make the rice, the recipe for which I am sharing here.  I tripled the recipe and in 15 -20 minutes it was ready. When you cook rice, make the cranberry mix side by side and you will finish making wonderful lunch in no time.


Fresh cranberries - 1 and 1/3 cups, halved
Rice - 1 cups
Water - 2 cups plus 2 tbsp 
Salt - 1 tsp
Fenugreek-turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp (refer here)
Turmeric - 1/8 tsp


Sesame oil - 2 -3 tbsp 
Peanuts - 2 tbsp 
Mustard seeds - 1/3 tsp
Split urad dhal - 1/4 tsp
Channa dhal - 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Red chillies - 3 to 4
Green chillies - 2, (slit lengthwise -2)


Cook the rice with 2 cups of water, fluff it and keep aside.

Add cranberries, 2 green chillies, 2 red chillies in a blender, and run a couple of times just to chop it to a coarse mixture (do not puree). Add a couple of tablespoons of water when you grind.

In a pan, heat oil. Add the spices in the seasoning list and the remaining red and green chillies. When they are golden brown and when mustard seeds finish spluttering add the coarse cranberry mixture and saute.

Cranberries start to soften faster. Add turmeric powder, fenugreek-turmeric powder, salt, and continue cooking it stirring often till the mixture cooks completely (one small indication is the oil that was initially added tends to ooze out). Switch off the flame.

Add the rice and mix thoroughly without mashing the rice.

Enjoy with papad.


Whole cranberries can be used but measure the appropriate quantity.

I used basmati rice. Please adjust water according to the type of rice used.

The chillies were spicy. Please adjust according to your spice levels. If wanted, a little chilli powder can be added.

Other nuts like cashews can also be added to enrich the flavor.