Gajar Rice: A Flavourful Delight with Carrots

Gajar Rice is a delectable dish that combines the goodness of carrots with aromatic rice. This flavorful recipe is perfect for those looking to add a touch of color and taste to their meals. Whether you prepare it on the stovetop or in the oven, Gajar Rice is a versatile dish that can be enjoyed as a main course or as a side dish. In this article, we will explore the history, ingredients, and two methods of preparing Gajar Rice, along with serving tips, FAQs, and a conclusion.

History of Gajar Rice:

Gajar Rice has its roots in Indian cuisine, where rice-based dishes are an integral part of the culinary tradition. Carrots, known as “gajar” in Hindi, are a popular vegetable in India and are commonly used in various dishes. Gajar Rice emerged as a creative way to incorporate this nutritious vegetable into rice-based recipes, adding both flavor and color to the dish.

Ingredients:

To prepare Gajar Rice, you will need the following ingredients:

  • 100 grams of Sela rice
  •  ½ cup of chopped carrots
  •  1 chicken stock cube
  •  1 teaspoon of garlic paste
  •  ½ teaspoon of black pepper powder
  •  ¼ teaspoon of cumin seeds
  •  1 ½ cups of water
  •  2 teaspoons of cooking oil
  •  Salt, as per taste
Gajar rice recipe ohoto 1 May 2024
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Preparation Time: 30-35 minutes

Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Servings: 3-4

Recipe: Stove Method

Follow these simple instructions to make Gajar Rice.

   a. Rinse the rice under cold water until the water runs clear, and drain.

Rinsing the rice under cold water helps remove excess starch and prevents it from becoming too sticky when cooked. As you rinse, the water will appear cloudy at first, but you should continue until the water runs clear, indicating that most of the starch has been washed away. Once done, draining the rice removes any remaining water, ensuring the correct water-to-rice ratio when cooking.

   b. Heat the cooking oil in a deep pan over medium heat.

Heating the cooking oil in a deep pan over medium heat prepares the pan for cooking. This step ensures that the oil reaches the desired temperature before adding ingredients, allowing for even cooking and preventing sticking or burning.

   c. Add cumin seeds and garlic paste to the oil, and sauté for a minute.

After heating the oil, add cumin seeds and garlic paste to the pan. Sautéing them for a minute allows the flavors to infuse into the oil and releases the aromatic properties of the cumin and garlic, enhancing the overall taste of the dish.

   d. Add the chopped carrots to the pan and sauté for another 2 minutes.

  Once the cumin seeds and garlic paste have been sautéed, add the chopped carrots to the pan. Sauté the carrots for another 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. This cooking process helps to soften the carrots and bring out their natural sweetness while retaining their texture.

      e. Add the rice, chicken stock cube, black pepper powder, and salt to the pan. Mix well.

Once the carrots have been sautéed, add the rice, chicken stock cube, black pepper powder, and salt to the pan. Mix all the ingredients together thoroughly, ensuring that the rice is well coated with the spices and seasoning. This step helps to incorporate the flavors and ensures an even distribution of the ingredients for a delicious and well-seasoned dish.

   f. Pour water into the pan and bring it to a boil.

After mixing the rice, chicken stock cube, black pepper powder, and salt, pour water into the pan. Bring the pan to a boil over medium-high heat. Boiling the water will start the cooking process of the rice and allow it to absorb the flavors from the spices and chicken stock, resulting in a flavorful and aromatic dish.

   g. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan with a lid, and let it simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the rice is cooked and the water is absorbed.

Once the water has come to a boil, reduce the heat to low. Cover the pan with a lid to trap the steam and heat inside. Allow the rice to simmer for 15-20 minutes or until it is fully cooked, and the water is absorbed. Simmering the rice slowly on low heat ensures even cooking and allows the flavors to meld together, resulting in perfectly cooked and flavorful rice.

   h. Remove from heat, fluff the rice with a fork, and let it sit for a few minutes before serving.

Once the rice is fully cooked and the water is absorbed, remove the pan from the heat source. Use a fork to gently fluff the rice, separating the grains and creating a light and airy texture. Allow the rice to sit for a few minutes before serving. This resting time helps to further enhance the flavors and ensures that the rice is evenly cooked throughout the dish. Now, it’s ready to be served and enjoyed!

Gajar rice recipe photo 3 May 2024
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1. Oven Method:

  •    a. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
  •    b. Rinse the rice under cold water until the water runs clear, and drain.
  •    c. In an oven-safe dish, heat the cooking oil over medium heat.
  •    d. Add cumin seeds and garlic paste to the oil, and sauté for a minute.
  •    e. Add the chopped carrots to the dish and sauté for another 2 minutes.
  •    f. Add the rice, chicken stock cube, black pepper powder, and salt. Mix well.
  •    g. Pour water over the rice and vegetables, and stir gently.
  •    h. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake for 25-30 minutes or until the rice is cooked and fluffy.
  •    i. Remove from the oven, fluff the rice with a fork, and let it sit for a few minutes before serving.

Serving Tips:

  •  Garnish the Gajar Rice with fresh cilantro leaves for added freshness and aroma.
  •  Serve Gajar Rice as a main course with raita (yogurt-based side dish) or a side of grilled chicken for a complete meal.
  •  This dish also pairs well with dal (lentil soup) and a side salad.
Gajar rice recipe photo 2 May 2024
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Nutritional value of Carrot Rice:

 

Ingredients Quantity (grams) Calories
Sela rice 100 345
Chopped carrots 50 21
Chicken stock cube 1 15
Garlic paste 5 8
Black pepper powder 2.5 8
Cumin seeds 1 7
Water 375 0
Cooking oil 10 88
Salt 0
Total Calories   492

Please note that the nutritional information may vary based on specific products and cooking methods. It’s recommended to calculate the nutritional value based on the exact brands and quantities of ingredients used in the recipe.

FAQs

Question 1. Can I use brown rice instead of Sela rice?

Answer: Yes, you can substitute Sela rice with brown rice. Keep in mind that the cooking time may vary, so adjust accordingly.

Question 2. Can I add other vegetables to Gajar Rice?

Answer: Absolutely! Gajar Rice offers room for creativity. You can add peas, bell peppers, or even broccoli to enhance the flavors and nutritional value.

Conclusion:

Gajar Rice is a delightful dish that combines the sweetness of carrots with aromatic rice, resulting in a flavorful and colorful meal. Whether prepared in the oven or on the stovetop, this recipe offers versatility and can be enjoyed as a main course or a side dish. Give Gajar Rice a try, and let its enticing aroma and vibrant flavors elevate your dining experience.    

Please note that these values are approximate and may vary depending on the specific ingredients used and their respective calorie content. It’s always advisable to calculate the calorie content based on the specific quantities and brands of ingredients used in your recipe to get a more accurate estimation.       

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