Friday, September 19, 2014

Murungaikeerai Rice

#DrumstickLeaves Rice - #MurungaikeeraiRice : Murungai keerai is called drumstick leaves in English. The scientific name is Moringa oleifera.

Drumstick tree finds a place in the back yard of each and every house in my native place, Tamil Nadu.
I brought some stem cuttings from my place and planted around my home in Raipur. Green shoots came out two or three times but withered away within a week. Then planted three small saplings given by one of our friends during last monsoon. Those three trees have grown up so well and I use the leaves regularly in my food.

Murungaikeerai [ moringa leaf ]
Murungai keerai - Drumstick leaves

The most nutritious part of drumstick tree is its leaves. The leaves are packed with the most valuable vitamins such as Vitamin B, C and A and minerals like Calcium, Magnesium and Potassium. The point to be noted is that Murungai keerai retains its nutritional value even after cooking.
These leaves are very good for mouth & stomach ulcers and also to get rid off other skin diseases.
Fresh leaves as well as dried powder of these leaves are being recommended to combat malnutrition among children and nursing mothers.

These leaves should be used in our regular diet at least twice a week in any form. Murungai keerai can be used for garnishing sambar [ when hot ] just like coriander leaves which makes it more tasty and gives a nice flavour to it. Koottu [ lentil ] can be prepared with green gram or thuvar dal. One more delicious and tasty recipe is paal saaru. Paal saru is prepared using coconut milk, a great remedy for mouth and stomach ulcers just like Manathakkali keerai Paal Saaru. We have already seen the recipe of  Murungai keerai Paal Saaru.

Here let me present a simple and nutritious rice dish using this green leafy vegetable and coconut milk.

Murungaikeerai Rice with Onion Curd Salad

Ingredients :

Ingredients for Murungaikeerai Rice

1/2 cup                           Raw Rice
1 Tsp                              Cumin seeds
8 -10                               Pepper
1 or 2                              Red chilly [ adjust]
15 - 20                            Garlic, finely chop
1                                     Onion, slice thinly
1 cup                              Murungai keerai - drumstick leaves [ adjust ]
1 cup                              Coconut milk
3/4 Tsp                           Salt [ adjust ]
2 Tsp                              Gingelly oil

Method :
Wash rice once with water in a vessel and soak in water.

Heat a pressure cooker with oil and splutter cumin and black pepper.
Immediately add broken pieces of red chilly and garlic and saute for a minute.
Then add onion and saute until it turns pink and gives out nice aroma.

Saute Onion and garlic after crackling Cumin

Drain water completely and add rice keeping the flame at high.
Saute for 30 seconds over high flame.
Then reduce the flame and saute until rice turns bright white.

Saute Rice until it turns bright white

Finally add murungai keerai and saute for few seconds.

Now add coconut milk and salt.

Add Coconut milk and salt with rice

Mix well. Close the lid with weight on.

Pressure cook for a whistle keeping the cooker at high flame.
Then reduce the flame to SIM position and cook for 5 minutes.
Open the cooker only after the steam has completely subsided.
Tasty & healthy Murungai keerai rice ready.

Enjoy with a spicy kuruma or thayir pachadi.

Murungaikeerai Rice with Onion Curd Salad

Other tasty rice varieties you might like to try :
Thengai sadham [ coconut rice ] Thengai murungaikeerai sadham [ coconut murungaikeerai rice ] Jeera Rice Peas Pulav Rice varieties