Black Urad Dal Rice | Ulundhu Paruppu Sadham Recipe | Tirunelveli Recipes
Lentils are indispensable in an Indian's kitchen. The variety is complemented with the myriad dishes from every region that's both nourishing and delicious.  But you know, eating healthy is such a tricky business. The ancient traditions and practices have been lost replaced with convenience and half baked information. We don't know how to optimize every morsel we put in our mouths. We have become this generation that prioritizes flavor and taste over enrichment of our self. No, don't get me wrong - flavor is important. But ONLY taste over nourishment is what I have an issue with. How else can you account for snacks like Potato Chips (that in fact doesnt honestly contain potatoes even!), Jelly Beans, M&M's and junkyard worthy candies (and others)  in the market today?
Black Urad Dal Rice | Ulundhu Paruppu Sadham Recipe | Tirunelveli Recipes
Anyway, I digress.  Legumes form an important part in a balanced diet - especially for a Vegetarian.  But Nature protects its plant seeds with an anti nutrient  - a natural substance that impairs the absorption of iron, zinc, calcium and other minerals.  Here you are, believing that you are eating healthy but are actually not, since you body hasn't been able to process any of the nutrients you consumed.  This is when preparing foods properly becomes essential.  When I look into traditional foods, many involve the art of soaking, sprouting and fermenting foods. They were done for a good reason.  It helped remove the phytates and enabled the body to not only digest these foods better but also helped in processing the essential nutrients well.  Its not as complicated as it sounds. Just soak your legumes and whole grains the previous night and as and when possible, sprout them.  It becomes easier once you have the routine set. I usually take one day of the week to start the sprouting process and in 2-3 days I have enough to see me through the week.
Black Urad Dal Rice | Ulundhu Paruppu Sadham Recipe | Tirunelveli Recipes
This particular recipe is a popular South Indian dish from Tirunelveli  where Black Lentil (Urad Dal) is combined with rice to make a khichdi (khichri).   I use whole black lentils, soaked and sprouted instead of just using split black lentil or white version. I also find many recipes that don't soak them.  While you can try those methods when short of time, I would recommend using sprouted whole black lentils for optimum benefits. Minimally spiced, easy to put together with minimal ingredients, its a complete protein . Goes well with any side dish, but eating it with Sesame Chutney (Ellu thuvayal/chutney) is traditional to the region. 
  • Cook time:
  • Prep time:
  • Serves: Serves 3-4 people
  • Yields: Makes around 4 cups
Ingredients
  • 1 cup hand pound Rice, or medium grained rice - See Tip 1
  • 1/4 cup Whole Black Urad Lentil (Karuppu Ulundhu), See Tip 2
  • 3-4 Garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • Himalayan Pink Salt to taste (or use Rock Salt)
  • 1 tbsp grated Coconut
  • 1 tsp homemade Ghee (or use coconut oil to make it vegan)
  • 1/4 tsp yellow Asafoetida
  • Few sprigs Curry leaves
Tips
1. Rice: You can use any medium grained rice. Traditional recipes, I assume, used Par Boiled Rice, also known as Idli Rice. I would recommend using Hand Pound Rice which is better than regular white rice but one notch inferior to Brown rice. Pls refer here for the difference between Brown Rice and Hand Pound Rice.

2. Whole Black Urad Lentil: The proportion can be adjusted according to your taste. At times, I also add 1/3 cup of lentil. I am aware of some recipes with equal amount of lentil to rice ratio. Start with the specified proportion and adjust it if need be in subsequent versions. Just make sure to adjust the amount of water needed to cook the lentil-rice mixture. While you can use skinned Urad Dal, split black urad, whole Black Urad for this recipe - I would recommend using sprouted whole black lentil for better digestion and absorption of the nutrients.
Method
1. Add the lentil, rice, garlic, cumin and salt to a pan
2. Add 3-4 cups of water. The amount of water will depend on the kind of rice you use. You need a texture bordering on a mushy texture. I used 3 cups of Hand pound rice.
3. Place it inside a pressure cooker (with water in the bottom)
4. and cook it for about 10-12 minutes for about 4-5 whistles.
5. Switch off and let the pressure settle down. On opening, this is how it looked like.
6. Add the coconut to it.
7. Heat a skillet and add Ghee. When hot, add the asafoetida and curry leaves to it. When aromatic, switch off the flame
8. and add that to the lentil rice mixture.
9. Give it a good mix until combined.
Serve hot along with Sesame chutney (which is traditional), but it goes well with any kind of semi dry or gravy side dish. For an optimal boost, make sure to include some kind of citrus to the meal. Citrus helps in iron absorption from the lentils.
Black Urad Dal Rice | Ulundhu Paruppu Sadham Recipe | Tirunelveli Recipes

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