Nimbu chawal: Lemon rice

By  Ratna,

untitled-4 The  white  butterfly  flew  aimlessly,  sitting  on  the  Prairie  crocus  once  and  on  the  Anemones  next,  going  back  to  the  crocuses  again. The  Robins  and  the  Blackbirds  are  tree  hopping.  It  is  spring  here  in  the  Prairies.  The  season  of  budding  and  blooming,  of  nesting  and  nursing.  The  season  of  a  new  beginning.


“Chawlo  garite  ghure  ashi”  let’s  go  for  a  drive,  offered  my  husband  N.  That  seemed  just  the  right  thing  to  do.  I  packed  some  snacks  and  my  camera  before  we  took  to  the  roads.


It  felt  like  the  nature  just  woke  up.  The  sky  so  clear  and  blue,  as  if  reassuring  the  surroundings,  everything  is  going  to  be  fine.  The  bent  bud  taking  that  clue  to  straighten  itself  first  then  opening  up  one  petal  at  a  time,  ever  so  slowly.


Lemon  rice  is  a  dish  that  requires  very  little  work.  It  is  an  excellent  way  to  use  up  left  over  rice  too.  Its  versatility  doesn’t  stop  there.  If  you  are  wondering  what    it  pairs  with?   It  is  as  comfortable  with  an  elaborate  vegetable  dish  at  its  side,  as  it  is  with  a  few  dollops  of  yoghurt  and  some  crispy  Poppadums.


The  wooden  bench  by  the  side  of  the  water  seemed  the  perfect  site  to  enjoy  our  snacks.  The  crunch  from  the  nuts,  the  tangy  taste  of  the  lemon  rice  complemented  each  other  just  right.

We  drove  aimlessly  on  the  country  roads.  ” Weren’t  we  here  a  few  minutes  back”  sometimes  we  said  in  unison.

It  didn’t  matter.

I  thought  of  the  white  butterfly…


Recipe:  Serves  3-4  as  snacks.


Cooked  rice                                                           1  cup

Ghee                                                                        1  Tbsp

Mustard  seeds                                                        1/4  tsp

Chana  dal                                                               1/2  Tbsp

Urad  dal                                                                  1/2  Tbsp

Peanuts                                                                     1  Tbsp

Cashew  nuts                                                            1  Tbsp

Curry  leaves                                                             5-6

Dry  red  chillies                                                         1-2

Coriander  leaves  chopped                                       1  Tsp

Turmeric  powder                                                     1/2  tsp

Salt  to  taste

Juice  of one  lemon


Take  the  ghee  in  a  saucepan  on  high  heat.  Fry  the  peanuts  till  golden  brown,  collect  them  on  paper  towels.  Add  the  mustard  seeds,  wait  till  it  pops,  then  add  the  chana  dal.  Fry  a  bit  till  it  changes  colour,  add  the  turmeric  powder,  cashews  red  chillies,  salt  and  curry  leaves.  Use  the  spatula  to  give  it  a  stir,  make  sure  they  don’t  stick  to  the  bottom  of  the  pan.  Put  the  gas  off  as  soon  as  cashews  brown  a  bit.

Add  the  rice,  mix  very  gently  so  the  grains  remain  intact.  Sprinkle  the  lemon  juice  on  top  and  give  one  more  stir.  Garnish  with  the  fried  peanuts  and  chopped  coriander  leaves.

You  are  done.

Inside  Scoop;

Curry  leaves  are  available  in  Indian  supermarkets.  Fresh  ones  are  the  first  choice,  dried  ones  are  available  too.

Urad  dal  is  Skinned  Black  lentil.

Chana  dal  is  Split  Desi  chick  peas.

Ghee  can  be  store  bought  or  made  at  home  too. Here  is  how  to.

10 thoughts on “Nimbu chawal: Lemon rice

  1. Voilà une recette qui me plait beaucoup ! j’adore tout ce qui est au citron et la cuisine confectionnée avec les épices, alors cette recette est faite pour moi 😉
    J’utilise très souvent les ingrédients que tu as utilisés, mais pas ensemble et pas avec du riz, je vais donc faire cette recette qui doit être délicieuse.
    Merci !

    • Welcome Clementine, I feel the same way regarding lemon, it does elevate the taste of the dish. Let me know how it turns out. Have a wonderful week ahead. Thanks so much for stopping by.

  2. Awww…such a lovely post! And lemon rice is so special to me because it reminds of my days in Bangalore when I was expecting. I was working for a bank and my team members would bring lemon rice for me. Your’s is perfection!

    • Cute! Isn’t it funny how some food brings back memories of an event or a time in one’s life. That’s the best I like about blogging, creating new memories or cherishing old ones.

  3. Your post gives me a glimpse of something so beautiful I can almost ‘smell’ the nature through it. I must say even though I love the recipe and those photos, I am most fond of your content. It’s like a breath of fresh air to read a content that takes me to THE PLACE, and it ties well with your recipe. 🙂 So glad to be here, Ratna & ‘see’ you in a bit.

    • Thank you so much for your kind words. I am happy you found the content interesting. Now don’t keep us waiting too long Pang. A ‘bit’ is a ‘bit’….

  4. So glad to hear that spring arrived for you, Ratna! Thanks for continuing to show your beautiful surroundings. Would love to see more as you go out exploring. Your featured image (overhead) is so appetizing. Beautifully composed.
    I’m also a fan of making something new with left over rice. Poppadums are new to me. I adore turmeric in paellas and use it generously. Thanks for this fresh, spring-inspired and lemony rice. How would you name this rice it in Hindi? Thanks for your teachings. Hugs xo 🙂

    • Nimbu is lemon and Chawal is rice. Thanks Elizabeth. I will take lot of pictures of nature, it is so pretty here. The Poppadums are lentil wafers sometimes with spices. They lend a crunch factor, that we take advantage of in many situations.

  5. What a lovely way to spend the day Ratna, and in such beautiful surroundings too. Your flowers are gorgeous. I’ve always just tipped a bit of tumeric into my rice to make it yellow, but definitely going to do it properly next time. Thank you, I will definitely be using your recipe. Have a great week. xxx

    • Thank you Ev. More and more researches are proving the health benefits of turmeric too, so it’s all good. I agree, the flowers are truly gorgeous. My favourite season. You have a great week ahead.

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