Bisi Bele Bath (Karnatakan Lentil Rice)


So I have a good excuse for not blogging as much these days, also why I didn’t blog for a couple of months a while back. We’re expecting! We announced on Facebook a while back, but I realized that I hadn’t said anything on my blog yet.

Anyhoo, cooking at first was impossible, EW! I couldn’t handle anything related to food, cooking, or even cooking shows. Then since then my mind has just been more occupied by other things :-)

Bisi bele bath is a rice, lentil and vegetable dish from the state of Karnataka in India, where Bangalore resides and my husband is from. I’m trying to find more easy recipes and this bisi bele bath does look somewhat complicated, but it actually wasn’t difficult. And I used rasam powder and bisi bele bath masala mix instead of making my own. Both can be found at an Indian market as well as natural tamarind paste.

1 cup rice (I used sona masoori)
1/2 cup toor dal
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
3 – 3 1/2 cups water
1 chayote squash peeled and diced
2 carrots peeled and sliced crossways
1 big handful green beans cut into inch long pieces
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 green bell pepper chopped
1 onion chopped
1 tomato chopped
2 teaspoons rasam powder
3-4 tablespoons bisi bele bath masala
1 tablespoon natural tamarind paste
~1 cup more water
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
7-8 curry leaves

  1. Cook the rice, toor dal, turmeric, and water in a pressure cooker for about 15-20 minutes. I put the burner on high until the first whistle, then lower to medium and then start the time.
  2. Boil the squash, carrots and green beans until tender. The squash takes longer, so add those for a few minutes before the carrots and green beans.
  3. In a separate pan, saute the bell pepper and onion in the oil until tender. Then add the tomatoes, rasam powder, bisi bele bath masala and cook until the tomatoes soften.
  4. Once the rice and dal is done, throw in the boiled vegetables, bell pepper and onion mixture, tamarind paste, water and salt.
  5. In a tadka or other small pan, heat the rest of the oil and add the mustard seeds. Once they start to pop add the curry leaves for a second and then throw into the dish, stir and cover.

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