Curry Leaf Rice

While I usually struggle to keep my fridge stocked with curry leaves, I suddenly have too much! Mum and Dad’s curry leaf trees have done well this winter, and a chap at work has an uncle who owns a farm!

Between the 3 of them my fridge is laden and I now need to start using the leaves up.Seeing that they’re usually quite expensive and difficult to find, it’d break my heart to throw any out. This recipe appears to be difficult, but really it’s quite easy and can be prepared in one pot. Just take your time, and do it step by step. The end result is worth it it’ll be a recipe you’ll pull out to impress family and friends.

You will need:
(a) Curry leaf paste:
1 and 1/2 cups of fresh curry leaves – remove stalks
1/4 cup grated coconut (frozen is fine)
2 garlic cloves – thinly sliced
2 or 3 thin slices of fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon cumin
2 cloves
2 dried chillies (cut into small pieces)
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/4 teaspoon fennel powder
1/4 teaspoon coriander powder
1/4 teaspoon garam masala powder
(b) Rice:
3 Cups of cooked rice (spread on a tray to cool) – you can use brown rice if you prefer
1/2 lemon or lime juice
Salt to taste
(c) Other ingredients:
1 Onion – sliced finely
(d) Tempering:
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/2 teaspoon channa dal (soaked in water)
4-5 fresh chillies (sliced finely)
Hing – pinch
(e) Garnish:
Chopped fresh coriander
Cashew nuts – roasted
  1. Heat pan, toast coconut until dry. Add a little oil, and fry coconut until golden brown, set aside. Add curry leaves, and fry till crisp, add all other ingredients (a), fry till crisp and fragrant. Grind all ingredients in a coffee mill.
  2. Heat pan and a little oil again, cook onion on low heat until soft and sweet. Remove
  3. Heat pan and a little oil, add (d) tempering ingredients and wait for mustard seeds to splutter, add (a) curry leaf paste and (c) onions and stir well. Add salt to taste. At this stage, you can serve this as chutney or store the paste for use later.
  4. Remove from heat, stir rice through, finish off with lemon or lime juice.
  5. Stir through chopped coriander and cashew nuts.

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