Beetroots were probably born when Mother Nature was a blushing bride. I wonder who she would have gotten married to. Hmm.
Anyways, that's her life. In my life however, the story of the beet is a little different. Yes, I blushed too once upon a time but I did not even like beets then! These have become a favorite of mine recently. But, I always cook it one and only one way. A beetroot poriyal cooked with onions and garnished with coconuts.
This time around, just like the many times I've done it before, I needed change. Something new with a favorite ingredient. Something that wakes up my taste buds and refreshes them. Something that was easy and also a one pot meal. It was a weekday, you see. Some weekdays I wish I was just like an old cat lady (without the old part, of course) who eats a raw store bought salad for a meal. But the south indian in me wants all the varied flavors of a nice home cooked meal after a little slogging in the kitchen. But then, once I sit down in front of my food - the next few mins is all worth it. Nothing beats home cooking.
Here are the beets sitting on my beat out chopping board. Just a little tip - if you use a lot of beets, just keep a regular plastic white chopping board just for the beets. I have one that I use only when chopping beets and eggplants and some yams. They all leave terrible stains and even if most of them go after washing, you'll still see a dirty hue.
Give them a good haircut and shave. Ah the life of a beet!
Chop into rough pieces.
Add the beets to a food processor while using a shredding blade. These are the days when I love my food processor. 10 mins of hand grating = 1 min in the processor. God bless the folks who designed this stuff.
I just love when this happens. Food Magic.
Here are the basic spices that go in first.
A stick of Cinnamon
A couple of bay leaves
A tbsp of red chilli flakes
About 5-6 pieces of whole cloves
About 1 tbsp of whole cumin
Make a quick coarse paste of 3G -
Green Chillies - 3-4
Garlic individual pods - 4-5
Ginger - about 2 tsp rough chopped
In a wide and deep pan, add 1 tbsp of oil. Add all the ingredients above to this and fry for a min.
Then, add about 1 cup of chopped onions to the oil. Add a pinch of salt to taste and fry for a couple of mins.
Add about 1/2 cup of peas. This is optional. But, if you are using frozen peas, microwave the peas in water in a glass bowl for about 3-4 mins. Drain and then add the cooked peas in here.
Add about 1/4 tsp pf turmeric powder and also 1/2 tsp of red chilli powder.
Throw in the shredded beets.
You can add some garam masala powder or other spices if you'd like at this stage.
Add 1 1/2 cups of washed basmati rice to the beets and mix well.
Pour 2 1/2 - 3 cups of water to the rice and beets. The water should be just enough to soak all the rice and then form a short layer on top.
Cover the pot with a lid and cook for about 15-20 mins in low-medium heat.
Open it up and let the steam hit your face. Aaah. the joy! Especially on a cold winter night!
And like I said -
This was my new find for my kitchen. Loved it when I saw it and absolutely had to have it. I was so happy that I went out to eat to celebrate!
Sorry I don't have final serving pictures. We were all hungry and just decided to serve ourselves out of the pot!
Serve hot with some cold raitha and some potato chips.
Enjoy. Peace out.