Beaten rice pilaf with peas, potatoes and carrots

Beaten rice pilaf with peas, potatoes and carrots

Anjum's Indian Vegetarian Feast
Emma Lee

Beaten rice – poha or powa – is cooked rice that has been flattened into a flake. It is a really interesting ingredient as it is very light and fluffy and has a lovely texture, and you only have to steam it to heat through. This dish is very popular in many parts of India and normally eaten for breakfast. I love it as a light, quick lunch, with a few vegetables. It really is worth seeking out from Indian shops. Don’t confuse it with the flaked rice you can find in supermarkets, as that is raw, so cooks differently. This dish would be eaten at breakfast in India, but I mainly make it for a light lunch.


Quantity Ingredient
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons bengal gram, well washed
1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
8-10 curry leaves
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1-2 green chillies, whole but pierced with the tip of a knife
8g root ginger, finely chopped, (peeled weight)
50g peas
50g potatoes, cut into 2 cm pieces
50g cauliflower, cut into 2.5 cm florets
30g carrots, cut into 1 cm dice
salt, to taste
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
150g beaten rice, (see recipe introduction)
2 1/2-3 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice, or to taste


  1. Heat the oil in a non-stick saucepan. Add the lentils and cook gently until just colouring. Add the mustard seeds and curry leaves and, once the popping dies down, the onion and green chillies and cook until the onion is just soft. Add the ginger and cook for another minute.
  2. Add the vegetables, salt, turmeric and a small splash of water; give the pan a good stir, bring to the boil, cover and cook for six to seven minutes or until the vegetables are cooked through, checking halfway and giving them a stir.
  3. Quickly wash the rice in some water and add to the pan with another 2 tablespoons of water. Cover and steam for three to four minutes, then stir in the lemon juice and check if the flakes are soft. Take off the heat, cover, and leave for another minute. Taste, adjust the seasoning and serve.
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