Wednesday

Mjadra



I love Middle-eastern food and its delicate but definite use of spices and the way the flavors all come together..flavorful but not too overpowering. We have a really good middle-eastern restaurant near our place and i used to eat there often...but no longer go there as the restaurant owner has been called for some really serious charges and i have no desire to support that cause with my money.

So...here i was craving the food but i did not like the mjadra at any other restaurant..so my quest for a good recipe started from the internet. I mainly looked for this recipe from a middle-eastern person..as my thought process is usually the natives know the best..thought there are exceptions we know :)

I mentioned about mjadra to my friend and she got me this recipe from her lebanese co-worker..i was told to use burgal or basmati rice...but i used brown rice coz it is chewier and reminds me more of the recipe that is served at that restaurant..and can i say i liked what i made ;)

Ingredients:

Brown lentils - 1/2 cup
Brown Rice - 1/2 cup
Onions - 1 large
Garlic- 3 pods - crushed or grated
Olive oil - 1 tbls + 1 tsp.
Brown Sugar - 1 tsp
Nutmeg - 1/2 tsp. - freshly grated
Pepper - 1/2 tsp.
Cumin - 1 tsp.
Salt - to taste

Method:

1. Soak the brown rice and the lentils seperately for 3-4 hours. This ensures they cook faster. You can omit this step if you want.

2. Slice the onions and crush the garlic and keep aside.

3. In a large pan, heat 1 tbls of olive oil and add the onions and garlic with the brown sugar and cook it on a low flame to caramelise. When the onions are caramelized add some salt,pepper and the grated nutmeg powder to it and keep aside.

4.Meanwhile cook the rice and lentils separately in lots of water with salt and cook till they are done but not mushy. Drain the excess water and spread the lentils and rice on separate plates so that the grains do not stick together.

5. Finally before you eat......add 1 tsp. of oil in the pan..add in jeera and 1/4 of the onion mixture (Step. 3). Now add the rice, the lentils and salt (if reqd.) and mix it well on high flame for a couple of minutes.

6. Serve the rice on individual plates and top it with the remaining of the caramelized onions and eat it with cold cucumber raita....yum :)

Notes:

1. In restaurants the onions are deep-fried..but i think the caramelized onions are not lacking in flavor either...

2. It would be great to top the mjadra with finely chopped parsley.

3. I think brown basmati would be really yummy..i did not have any so subbed with long-grain...


27 comments:

Richa said...

oh yeah! the combo of fried onion, rice & lentils is one to be had :)
me too likey m/e food ;)
looks yum!

easycrafts said...

Looks Great...hope u had a great time with it

sra said...

Hi Rajitha, what are brown lentils? Looks good.

Sig said...

Love it... it sure looks very good, especially with the caramelized onions on top... Mjadra, how do you pronounce it? I've never heard of it, may be because there is no animal in it :D

Nags said...

brown rice is supposed to be really nutritius.. this looks nice and yummy with lots of onions.. i also havent tried flavoring with nutmeg. thanks for sharing!

Shella said...

Hey Rajitha, never had Mjarda.....but whatever it is looks really wonderful, n I would really like to give it a try. It looks some sort of a daal-pulao.!!!

Happy cook said...

Hey it looks delicious and the caramalized onion is mouthwattering

Namratha said...

Looks truly yummy Rajitha, esp the caramelized onions, can almost taste them! Very simple recipe, good one dear.

bee said...

i agree asbout west asian food being zesty without being overoverpowering. lebanese is my fav cuisine. thanks for the recipe.

RAKS KITCHEN said...

Every thing including fried onions are in shades of brown! Lovely look!

Seena said...

I always prefer Middle Eastern food which is very healthy.Have tasted this.Like bee Lebanese my favorite cuisie. Now they are increasing rates..:(

sunita said...

I adore middle eastern cuisine ...your mjadra looks divine.

sagari said...

lovely recipe looks soooo comforting and deleciousssss u have a wonderfull recipes

Laavanya said...

I've not tasted any Lebanese food.. Hummus and Falafel are the only middle eastern food I've tasted. This looks extremely delicious and those caramelized onions on top - totally droolworthy.

remya said...

love the combo..especially freid onions....mjadra looks sooooo yumm

TBC said...

Haven't explored this cuisine all that much except for the pita-hummus types:-)

Anonymous said...

Wow this would be a good one to use my forlorn brown rice. I have never had this dish before, looks good with those fried onions

--sandeepa

Rajitha said...

richa - same here re :)

easy crafts - i did!!

sra - i got these from american grocers sra..never seen them in indian...sorry ..could not help you out..

sig - i usuallly say majadra when i order...got the spelling from the restauran's website...and i think you got the point on why you don't know :D

nags - me too..except in soups i have never used nutmeg for cooking...


shella - it is sort of.and is good :)

happy cook - the carmelized ones were the best part!!


nammu - same here..i took all the really carmelized ones as jeeves has no appreciation for them!!

bee - lebanese is good food..have u tried their ghallaba..it is mouth-watering...

raks - i never saw it that way!!

seena - it is very healthy...except in america where they feel even 1/4 cup of Olive oil is good for you!!

Sunita - i think i am striking lots if similarities in people here :)

sagari - thnnks..i was good :)

laav- you must tr other dishes too..they are all good..try ghallaba if you ever visit a mediterranean place..yummilicios..is that a word ;)

remya - it was girl :)

tbc - start exploring it yaar..kya tu bhi..lean cuisine kha rahi hain...try the vegetarian ghallaba..yummy!!

sandeepa - kya anonymous ban giyi ?? yep the poor brown rice may get revitalized in this..i avoid brown rice too..tho i know it is good for health...but nothing comes between me and the while guy ;)

Kribha said...

My first intro with middle-eastern food was when my hubby brought back home some leftover he had at a restaurant. I absolutely loved it. Very different from our normal pulavs. I remember seeing something like vermicelli in it. Is this the same kind of rice? Your plate of mjadra looks so tempting specially with the carmelized onions on the top.Thanks for sharing this.

vegeyum said...

This looks great! I must get out my Lebanese vegetarian cookbook again - it is an old old book but with great great recipes in it. Love the idea of rice and onions.

Kajal said...

This dish looks yummy my dear and healthy too. Photo looks absolutely fine and clear.

Bharathy said...

Rice,browned onions,a touch of brown sugar!..interesting combo girl..:)
Have never heard of Mjadra!..looks lovely!..thanks for sharing the internationals..:)

lakshmi said...

I love Lebanese food - this sounds like a great recipe esp with the caramelized onions

AnuSriram said...

Never heard this before... Have to try it soon... Looks delicious!

Shankari said...

the carmelised onions r so inviting:)

Cynthia said...

Oh my, I do love the combo of spices here and the carmamelized onions umm, umm, umm.

Asha said...

Looks and sounds like a delicious dish!:))