“Are you ever going to post the tricolour rice or no?”, She seemed nettled.
“Er.. but it’s so late, I could tell you now, on the phone” I sputtered.
“No, no time! Put it up and I will catch it in between work’ And she bangs the phone.
My sister – younger, smarter and definitely more headstrong than I have ever been, always gets her work done, somehow! No one says no to her, she makes sure of that. She thinks its her tenacious personality that gets it done when in real we do what she says because we love her. But we let her think otherwise ;).
Indian Independence Day was on August 15th. And I am 12 days late. But like the sister exhorts – Tis better to be late than not post at all. So I put this up now. For one, because she badgered me for a detailed recipe. And for the fact that this one is worth posting!
So like how it happens every morning of 15th August, we were getting ready for our National Flag hoisting. The child was excited. More so, because she was going to sing a very patriotic song. She had been rehearsing for the past 10 days and had held captive any audience she could find to practise her crooning.
In between adjusting a tricolour sash, combing her hair, sticking various tricolored pictures on her skirt, she spoke persistently and tirelessly. Of matters mundane and routine. And then suddenly she squealed in delight, turned to me and said.. why don’t you make some lunch which is tricolour. I will call Saancha and Sanjana and you can take pictures too for your blog. Now, the picture bit was her act of luring me to make something fancy.
Our lunch was patriotic indeed but in return I got her to get rid of all the gaudy stickers she piled on her skirt 😉
Rice enveloped in creamy white sauce, dotted with carrot and beans, topped with an orange tomato marinara and a spicy spinach coriander puree, and finished with soft cheese – whats not to like in this! It is creamy soft pillowy flavourful and a delight in every bite. Worth a try, anytime!
The recipe –
For the Orange Marinara: 3 medium-sized tomatoes, blanched whole in hot water. 5/6 pods of garlic, 3 whole red chilies or kashmiri red chilies, salt and pepper to taste, 1 tsp oregano. 1 tsp olive oil.
For the Spinach Puree: 1 big bunch of spinach leaves, washed-blanched. 3 green chilies, a tiny piece of ginger, a pinch of sugar and salt.
For the Rice:
Heat butter in a wok, stir fry the vegetables till almost done. Add flour. Saute it as it coats the veggies. Pour milk, mix till the milk thickens. Add boiled rice, salt, pepper, green chill sauce if using. The white sauce will envelope the rice.This taste good as it is!
For the Spinach Puree:
Grind blanched spinach, along with salt, sugar, green chilies and ginger till smooth. You can adjust the quantity of the green chilies according to your taste. Keep aside.
For the Orange Marinara:
In a wok, heat oil, sauté garlic and red chilli. Add coarsely smashed blanched tomatoes. Season with salt, pepper and oregano. Cook covered on low heat till oil leaves sides. cool the mixture and grind to a fine orange paste. This marinara can be stored in the refrigerator for 3/4 days and is used as pizza toppings or in pastas/noodles or rice.
In a butter greased baking dish or casserole, make alternate layers of marinara, rice and spinach puree. Finally garnish with grated cheese. Bake at 200 C for 15 minutes or till the cheese melts and golden dots appear.
Note: I didn’t do the traditional layering coz I wanted the tricolour pattern, I lay the rice and then poured the sauces to replicate the Indian National Flag.
Ludicrous interpretation of the colours made me go wide-eyed with shock though amidst peals of incessant laughter. The girls all had appalling insight on this subject! The sublimity of the beautiful colours on our flag was then preached and lectured while their plates were licked clean!
I am taking this to Angie’s 31st Friday Fiesta! Do pop over to see some delicious recipes!
How creative! It looks absolutely delicious.
Wow the casserole looks so inviting and colourful Namrata. ….yummmmmmm
It looks beautiful!Colours perfectly captured!
🙂 thank you
Milee is tall! I am so happy to see her. The colours of the rice are bang on. Love the simplicity of it.
Yea she is tall. Thanks Charu. Simple, yes, give it a try.
Such a creative dish! And I loved your storytelling, Namrata 🙂
🙂 Thanks Anjana
You are so good with your narration, Namrata! A beautiful dish and lovely pics. 🙂
So gorgeous Namrata! This rice sounds awesome!!
Its delicious .. do try. Simple to make too!
Wow, so pretty and festive…fantastic party food, I’d imagine!
yes, festive it is. Thank you.
That’s lovely Namrata!..love the combinations.
Beautiful casserole:-) your sis s right its never late..
What a beautiful creation Namrata. Simply superb.
I am making this ASAP!
Do – do!!
Wow! This looks so lovely! 🙂
I’m so glad you did decide to post it, even if it is a bit late for Indpendence Day. It looks like a very original and tasty dish, and love the story around it. Isn’t it great when the whole family is so supportive in your blogging activities!
Yes, though none of them read what I write, but they do assist me in photography as they are interested in it too! The dish has evolved in years… where it started off as white rice italian pulao and gradually moved to what it is today 🙂
How very clever!! I can only imagine what this tastes like 🙂
Thanks. Its so simple to make, do try sometime. Kids love it.