Lemon Rice is one among the typical mixed rices of South India, a simple yet very tasty one. This along with potato fry is an awesome combination. But during my college days when I was in the hostel, I used to simply hate this rice, I never knew that lemon rice could be made so bad until then, the rice had a dark yellow color from an overdose of turmeric powder and didn't have a hint of the lemon flavor. The perfect lemon rice should have the light yellow color and you should be able to taste the slight sourness from the lemon juice added to it, also I add some chopped ginger which compliments the lemon..
Need To Have
- Rice - 3/4 cup
- Lemon Juice - 2 tablespoons
- Raw Peanuts - 3 tablespoons
- Broken Cashews - 1 tablespoons
- Split Moong Dal - 1 tablespoon
- Chopped Ginger - 1 tablespoon
- Green Chillies - 2 slit
- Dried Red Chilly - 1
- Mustard Seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
- Urad Dal/Black Gram - 1 teaspoon
- Asafoetida - 1/4 teaspoon
- Turmeric Powder - 1/4 teaspoon
- Curry Leaves - 15
- Salt - to taste
Cook the rice with some salt and a teaspoon of oil, when done, cool and keep it. Soak the moong dal for 1/2 an hour.
Heat some oil, first add the peanuts, roast till it starts getting the roasted color, now add the cashews, followed by the urad dal and mustard seeds.
When the mustard seeds start spluttering, add the green chillies and red chilly, ginger pieces and the soaked moong dal. Saute for 2 minutes, then add the curry leaves, asafoetida and turmeric powders, mix, then finally add the lemon juice and salt and switch off.
Cool slightly and add to the rice and mix well.
I used parboiled rice, can also use raw rice, somehow I don't prefer basmati rice which has a flavor of its own which dominates over the lemon flavor.
Whichever rice you use, when cooked, the grains should be separate.
Always mix the lemon juice mixture little by little to the rice, sometimes the lemon could be a little too sour, also if you feel the sourness is not enough, you can always squeeze some lemon juice at the end.
Have the rice at least 1/2 an hour after it's mixed, this allows time for the flavors to sink in.