Another famous dish eaten during the Navratri fasts is the Sama Rice Pulao. Else, it is also known by many names such as Samvat Rice, Vrat Rice, Sama ke Chawal, Bhagar Rice, Jungle Rice & Samo and more.
What makes this dish famous is that it can be eaten during the Navratri fasts and also healthy at the same time. As it is made using little oil/ghee, the dish is quite light on our palates & our stomachs especially when you are consuming a lot of fried items. If the flavoring in this recipe is deemed to be insufficient to your family’s taste, you are free to add more veggies or spices to make it more nutritious and flavorful.
- Sama Rice/Samvat Rice/ Barnyard Millet-1/2 cup
- Water-1 & 1/2 cup
- Ghee/Cooking Oil-2 tbsp
- Cubed Paneer– 1/4 cup
- Split Cashews – 10 to 12
- Peeled & Cubed Potatoes- 1/2
- Peanuts-6 to 8
- Cumin seeds (Jeera)-1 tsp
- Red Chilli Powder-1/2 tsp (or to taste)
- Chopped Green Chillies-1
- Rock Salt (Sendha Namak)- To taste
- Chopped coriander-1 tbsp (For garnishing)
- Lemon Juice – 1 tsp (optional)
- Wash & drain the sama rice well. This is required to wash away the impurities. Then soak in clean water for 30 minutes. In the meantime, let’s proceed to next step.
- In a heavy bottomed or non-stick pan, heat cooking oil or ghee. Fry cubed paneer on medium flame till it is golden brown. Keep these fried paneer cubes aside.
- In the same pan, add split cashews & fry them till they turn golden in colour. Keep these roasted cashews aside.
- In the same pan, add cubed potatoes and saute them for 4-5 minutes. Add peanuts and roast it on low flame for 2-3 minutes.
- Then add chopped green chillies, cumin seeds and red chilli powder. Roast for 10-15 seconds till they start releasing their aromas.
- Drain all the excess water from rice. Add these soaked rice in the pan. Stir gently so that rice is mixed well with all the spices. Add water & rock salt (sendha namak) to it. Let it cook on low flame.
- If you like the consistency to be on softer side i.e. more of the khichdi texture then just add 1/2 cup water more.
- When the water reduces to half cover it with a lid. Let it cook covered for 3-4 minutes.
- After that add fried paneer & cashews which we kept aside in step 1. Fluff it gently with the help of a fork and switch off the flame if there is no more water left, else let it cook for 1-2 minutes more.
- Garnish with fresh chopped coriander leaves. You can sprinkle some lemon juice over it but that is totally optional. Serve it hot with raita, curd or Coriander chutney!!