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Curd Rice 

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”     – Leonardo  Da Vinci 

Curd rice is also known as yoghurt rice and is a popular dish of South India. We call it ‘ Thayir Saddam.’ To us, South Indians, it’s comfort food and occupies a very prominent place – be it the ‘Thali’ or any festive occasion. It is the curd rice at the end which is a soothing finish to a sumptuous meal. It is a one- dish meal, easy to make, homemade and refreshing on a hot day. When served chilled, sprinkled with grapes or pomegranate – you are in heaven! 
Summer has hit us early this year and all we want for lunch is curd rice. My kids and I. Absolutely no masala and easy to make. I always use a day old curd to get the right sourness in my curd rice. When my daughter was young and going to school, all she ever wanted for lunch was just curd rice and curd rice and now it’s my niece Rachel who lives in Bangalore, it’s her packed lunch every other day.

This is truly a Summer Cooler – here’s the recipe :


  • Rice – 1cup
  • Water- 4 and a 1/2 cups
  • Salt
  • Milk- 1 and a 1/2 cups (boiled)
  • Curd – 1/2 cup
  • Vegetable oil – 2 tbsp
  • Asafoetida powder – a pinch
  • Mustard seeds -1 tsp
  • Ginger – 1 tbsp minced
  • Green chilli -1 tbsp minced
  • Curry leaves – a few
  • Coriander leaves chopped – 2 tbsp
  • Seedless grapes or pomegranate seeds -1/2 cup


  • Wash rice thoroughly and in a pressure cooker add rice along with water and salt. After 2 whistles switch off and leave the steam  to release  on its own.
  •  Transfer the cooked rice to a wide -mouthed vessel, mash with a big spoon and keep to cool under a fan.
  • After 10 minutes, add hot milk and stir in thoroughly, leave to cool, the consistency of the mixture should be loose as the mixture thickens on cooling.
  • Meanwhile in a pan heat some oil, add a good pinch of asafoetida powder.
  • Add mustard seeds and let it crackle.
  • Add minced ginger and green chillies and stir well.
  • Add curry leaves and mix well.
  • Add seasoning to the rice mixture and mix well. Set aside to cool.
  • Once the rice mixture is at room temperature, add  curd and mix well, taste.
  • Garnish with seedless Grapes, pomegranate or even chopped coriander leaves.
  • Half an hour before serving you can chill the curd rice or serve it lukewarm.
  • This serves 4-6 people.

Chefs tips:

  • Do not try and forcefully release the steam .
  • The rice has to be mashed when hot.
  • It is very important after adding the milk, the texture of the rice should be loose.
  • The seasoning has to be added before the curd is added or the curd will split.
  • You can also add boondi, grated carrot and even grated mango but you must understand it’s the curd that is the main hero. Do not overcrowd. 
  • A dash of lime or mango pickle is all you need with curd rice to keep you cool through the hot days of a long summer  already staring at you.
  • Though I must say, a glass of chilled beer too would help!

Till my next post,



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