Nimmakaya Pulihora or chitrannam or lemon rice is a traditional South Indian rice recipe where cooked rice is mixed with lime juice, green chili, coriander mixture, and tempered with spices and nuts. “Puli” in pulihora means tangy and lemon juice gives tangy flavor to the rice. Lemon rice gets it’s yellow color from turmeric added as part of tempering
It is easy to prepare in large quantities in a short amount of time, so it is served as prasadam in most of the Hindu temples.
It is also a very popular lunch box item served at many PGs and hostels. Back when I used to stay in PG, we were given lemon rice on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Even bachelors who cook on their own can prepare it without any difficulty as it does not require any advanced cooking skills or multiple complex steps/ingredients.
In our home, we prepare this for most of the festivals, as it suits well as a side dish for most of the spicy or sweet recipes. This happens to be also a very favorite rice dish in my family.
We will prepare this recipe not only on festival days but whenever not I am not in a mood to cook much or when there is a lot of leftover rice.
Today I am sharing this lemon rice recipe which I have learned from my mom. This is a different version of the common version of Andhra style lemon rice. In this recipe, we will add the blended mixture of green chilies and coriander leaves instead of adding slit green chilies. By blending the green chilies, coriander leaves, and adding to the rice gives a nice flavor to it.
How to Cook Rice for Lemon Rice:
Usually, we will add water in a 1:2 ratio to rice to cook it perfectly. For lemon rice, the rice should not become mushy it should be a little grainy to get the perfect texture. So, we will add a little less water than usual. Here I have added, 1 and 3/4 cups of water for 1 cup of rice.
How to prepare the spicy mixture:
1. Take a handful of coriander leaves, 3-4 green chilies. Wash them thoroughly.
2. In a blender, add coriander leaves, green chilies, and 1/2 spoon of salt.
3. Pulse it to make a coarse mixture and set aside.
How to do tempering for Pulihora or Lemon Rice:
1. Heat a frying pan, add 2-3 tbsp of oil.
2. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, chana dal, urad dal, and peanuts.
3. When the dal turns slightly brown, add finely chopped ginger, curry leaves.
4. Fry them until the curry leaves turn crisp, turn the flame to low.
5. Add the green chili and coriander mixture and turn off the flame.
6. Let the mixture fry on the remaining heat.
How to prepare Pulihora or Lemon Rice:
1. Squeeze the lime juice into a bowl, and remove the seeds if any.
2. Take the cooked rice in a mixing bowl, add turmeric, salt, and lime juice.
3. Mix the rice to coat the lime juice, turmeric, and salt without making rice mushy. Set aside.
4. Add the tempering mixture to the rice.
5. Mix well and that’s it. Pulihora is ready to serve. For best taste, let it set aside for 1-2 hrs. Rice will absorb the lime juice, spicy flavors from the tempering and its tastes enhance.
Please do try this recipe and tell us how it comes up. Please share your views as comments.
If you love rice dishes, please try out the other rice dishes
- Vangi bhath Recipe | Egg Plant Rice | Brinjal Rice
- Daddojanam Prasadam Recipe | Andhra Style Curd Rice Recipe
- Peas Pulao Recipe| Matar Pulao Recipe
Pulihora or Chitrannam or Lemon Rice
- 1 bowl Cooked Rice
- 3-4 tbsp Lime Juice or 2 medium size limes
- 3-4 Green chilies
- 1/4 cup Coriander leaves or a handful of coriander leaves
- 1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
- 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
- 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
- 1 pinch Hing
- 1 tbsp Chana Dal
- 1 tbsp Urad Dal
- 2 tbsp Peanuts
- 1 tbsp Finely chopped Ginger or 1 inch Ginger
- 2 tbsp Salt or as per your taste
- 2 tbsp Oil
- Wash the coriander and green chilies.
- In a blender, add green chilies, coriander leaves, and 1/2 spoon of salt. Pulse them once or twice to make a coarse mixture. Keep it aside.
- Squeeze the lime juice into a small bowl. Take off the seeds if any.
- Take the cooked rice in a mixing bowl, sprinkle turmeric powder, lime juice, and salt.
- Mix well so that rice is nicely coated with turmeric and salt without making the rice mushy and set aside.
- Heat the oil in a frying pan.
- Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, chana dal, urad dal, and peanuts.
- When the seeds start spluttering, add finely chopped ginger and curry leaves.
- When the raw smell of ginger goes off and curry leaves turn crisp, reduce the flame to low and add the blended green chili and coriander paste.
- Sautee it for a minute until the raw smell goes off and turn off the flame.
- Add this tempering to the rice. Mix well.
- Pulihora is ready to serve. To get the nice flavors set it aside for 1-2 hrs.
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