Mauritian Tamarind Rice (Poulisadon) – A Step-by-Step guide

If you have never eaten tamarind rice before, boy you are in for a treat!

Tamarind rice or Poulisadon as it is commonly called in Mauritius is a vegetarian meal that is usually prepared during the religious fast. Poulisadon is usually accompanied by an eggplant dish, greens, coriander chutney and hot tamarind sizzling peppers. I couldn’t find any peppers for this time but all the other fixings are here and my, are they good!

You will need to soak the rice for a minimum of 30 minutes. Put the soaked rice to cook in water until it is half-cooked.

Here are some of the ingredients that you will need:

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Mustard seeds, curry leaves, ghee, tamarind paste, dried chilies

You can find tamarind  paste and curry leaves in any Asian store. I am using dried curry leaves but fresh ones would taste even better.

Slice a big onion. Separate half of it for frying and reserve the rest. In a deep pan, add the oil and the ghee and heat on medium heat. Fry half of the sliced onion. I like mine extra dark and crispy as below. The ghee gives the fried onions a wonderful taste but make sure to not eat it all and keep some for garnish.

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In the same oil, add in the rest of the sliced onion and the below ingredients (except for the tamarind). Add some salt. In a separate bowl, add the tamarind and about 3 TBsp of warm water for it to soak.

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Let the spices cook for about 5  minutes on medium heat then fold in the half-cooked rice. Mix well. Strain the tamarind water and add that into the rice.

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Mix gently and add some water. Decrease to low heat and cover the pan for the rice to cook fully. Mix twice after 5 minutes each then take it off the heat and let it sit covered for another 15 minutes. The rice will finish cooking with steam.

Garnish with the fried onions and your tamarind rice is SORTED!

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I have never had tamarind rice with any other fixings that the traditional ones (eggplant, greens, peppers & chutney) but I bet that they make a great side with a protein curry dish or even a flavorful variant of plain basmati.

The sides:

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Top center: Spinach greens. Below left: Eggplant Mauritian style. Below right: Coriander chutney.

So good!

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Who said vegetarian food had to be boring?

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Bon appetit!

For 2 servings

You will need:
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  • 1 cup rice
  • 2 Tsp mustard seeds
  • 2 TBsp ghee
  • 5 dried red chilies
  • 2 branches curry leaves
  • 1 knob of tamarind paste
  • 1 big onion
  • salt to taste
  • water
  • 1/4 cup neutral cooking oil

Steps:

  1. Put the rice to soak (minimum of 30 minutes) and cook until it is half-done.
  2. Slice the onion and separate in half.
  3. In a bowl, add the tamarind and some warm water for it to soak.
  4. Heat the oil and ghee. Fry the first half of the sliced onions on medium heat. Reserve for garnish.
  5. In the same oil, add in the rest of the sliced onions, the curry leaves, mustard seeds and red chilies. Add salt and cook for 5 minutes.
  6. Fold in the half-cooked rice and mix well. Strain the tamarind water paste and add that into the rice. Mix gently and add about 1/4 cup of water. Decrease to low heat and cover the pan for the rice to cook fully.Mix twice after 5 minutes each then take it off the heat and let it sit covered for another 15 minutes.
  7. Garnish with the fried onions and your Tamarind Rice is ready!

 

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