Thursday, 25 September 2014

Colorful Bell Peppers Veg Fried Rice




A variety of colourful bell peppers (capsicum) are available around the world, though, I have only come across green, yellow and red bell peppers in India. I have used all three in this veg fried rice recipe. There is a perceptible change in taste of green and red/yellow bell peppers. Whereas the green ones are tangy and taste better, to me, once cooked; the red/yellow ones a slightly tangy-sweet taste that makes them a favourite for raw salads and sandwiches.

Every time I use yellow bell peppers, my dadi asks me what it is and she looks surprised to learn that bell peppers can be yellow. She is 90. Then I shock her even more by telling that the red things in her rice are not tomatoes and that they too are bell peppers. She grows even more wide eyed. Then to top it all off I tell her that bell peppers come in many other colors such as orange and purple. At that point she resigns and just eats her food. She probably thinks I am crazy!


I am so happy how delightfully tasty and easy this recipe turned out. I have used minimal spices, no powdered spices at all. My mom suggested I add some paneer but I said naaa! Then I thought I could add some peanuts but again I decided to go with naaa! It's a complete meal in itself . Serve with a simple raita or, what the heck, with plain curd and you'll not crave anything else.

This gorgeous rice is just perfect for Sunday brunches, a lazy weekend lunch with friends or a 'let's kill the rut' dinner on a weeknight. It is also a great way to use leftover rice.




P.S. If you have old people around, just grate the bell peppers instead of slicing them and they will be able to enjoy it better.



Ingredients:

Basmati rice- 1 1/2 cups

Mixed bell peppers (I used green,yellow & red)- 1 1/2 cup, very thinly sliced
Green beans- 1/2 cup, cut into 1 inch pieces
Onion- 1/2 cup, finely chopped

Green chillies- 3 nos, slit
Garlic- 1 tsp, minced
Ginger- 1 tsp, grated

Bay leaf- 1 nos.
Star anise- 1 nos.
Cinnamon- 1 inch piece

Salt to taste
Ghee (Clarified butter)- 2 tbsp

Recipe:

Wash and soak rice in water for 30 minutes.

Cook and keep aside to cool down.

Heat ghee in a wok.

Add bay leaf, star anise and cinnamon.

After 20 seconds, add onions and saute for a minute.

Add chillies, ginger and garlic and saute for another minute or till onions start turning brown.

Add beans. Cook until just tender.

Add bell peppers and cook on medium flame for 2 minutes. We do not want to cook beans and bell peppers fully. Cook just until tender, still retaining their crunch.

Now add rice. Add salt and mix well gently.

Cover and keep on low flame for 2 minutes to warm rice.

Serve and enjoy with raita or curd.

Tip:
You may garnish with just a little garam masala at the end.