Tehari is a pulao kind of dish that used to be made on many lazy Sunday afternoons in my home. A one-pot meal, it is easy to cook and tasty too. And you know the most coveted part was the slightly burnt portion of tehari from the bottom that we siblings would fight over. Here’s the simple recipe. Though this one has potatoes and peas, you can easily add other vegetables of your choice as well. Most people prepare it with potatoes, peas and cauliflower.
2 cups Basmati rice (soaked for half an hour in plain water)
2 tbsp. oil or ghee
2 bay leaves
10-12 black peppercorns
2 black cardamom
2 tbsp. ginger garlic paste
4-5 green chillies split
1 large onion sliced
1 cup diced vegetables (potato cubes and peas)
1 tsp. garam masala
1 tsp. coriander powder
½ tsp. turmeric powder
½ tsp. red chilly powder
Salt to taste
Chopped coriander leaves for garnish
I normally use a pressure cooker to make my Tehari. It is faster and easier that way. You may, of course, use a thick-bottomed pan for the same. Heat the oil in the pressure cooker. Put in all the whole spices and fry for a minute. Add the chopped onions and fry for a couple of minutes till they are transparent. Add ginger-garlic paste and fry for another couple of minutes. Add in the slit green chillies and fry for one more minute. Now tip in the cut veggies and fry lightly. You can add a little water if everything becomes too dry.
Now add in the rice. Put in all the dry masalas along with salt. Add 2-3 cups of water and close the lid of the pressure cooker. It takes about 3-4 whistles to cook everything and for the slight burning at the bottom. Don’t keep it too long on the fire or you may end up with horribly burnt mess. Open the cooker and gently fluff up the rice. Serve hot garnished with chopped coriander.
We normally served it at home with a hot green chutney and some cool yoghurt raita. A perfect Sunday afternoon lunch.