Bisi BeLe HuLiyanna Courtesy: K. raghunandana

i) To make powder
ii) To make Bhaath using the powder
Powder : The powder can be made and kept for use upto 8 weeks (after that the flavor goes
down). Take equal quantities of Dhaniya seeds and red chilies (one handful of each, for a
small bottle-full of powder). For one tumbler of dhaniya about 15 red chilies would do the
job. Fry them “together” with a “few drops” of oil-just enough to keep the
“Baanale”(WOK) oily. (You will find that using 2 spoons at diagonals makes it easy to
fry). Fry on low fire till you get that “nice-smell” with very little fumes, take out before
dhaniya starts changing colour (the other indicator is the red chilies become shiny with
oil). Put them on a plate to cool.
Put one handful of chana daal (kadale bele) and half of udad daal (uddina bele) and fry
slowly using 1 teaspoon of oil.Fry till both start to turn brown,remove. Then take 1 spoon
each of pepper (meNasu) lavanga (cloves) and gasagase’ (poopy seeds or khuskhus), 1/2
spoon each of jeera (cummin seeds) and menthya (methi seeds) , fry them till it smells good
(menthya should only turn deep brown but without blackening). In the end add two table
spoons of dry coconut (grated coconut normally available in all supermarkets will do well
– but not the sweetened variety). Also add a pinch or two of HING powder. Just “one-full-
piece” of daalchini chekke (pattai) must be added now. Some dried curry leaves and a
pinch of turmeric are also be added at this stage (if you have them). After adding these do
not continue frying for long, not more than a few seconds. Allow these to cool in the
Baanale (WOK), by switching off gas and keeping the Banale on another (cold) stove, for
Powdering with dry grinder: Firstly, powder the dhaniya and chilies. After finely done,
take out and then grind the cooled ingredients of daals etc. Grind the jeera and others
separately till the poppy seeds also powder well. Grind them well, then add the powdered
chili, run the dry grinder once more to mix. Take out, mix with a spoon and store in a
cleaned bottle, close it tight. Some people add turmeric only at the stage of mixing, this is
to avoid the grinder for getting the “yellow” tinge of turmeric. But turmeric is essential for
the “keeping quality (storage)” of the powder.
Making Bhaath :
Soak a large lemon sized tamarind in water.Cook equal amounts of Toor Dal and rice
alongwith a pinch of turmeric and two spoons of oil,in the pressure cooker. After it is well
cooked (15 minutes in low flame after the steam hissing starts) allow it to cool. Take it out,
add the tamarind (squeeze tamarind well and put only the thick tamarind solution), one
small lemon sized bella (gur) or two large spoons of brown sugar. Add a few spoons of
oil, cook slowly turning it around. Then add the powder, cook for a short period, turning it
around well. Add fresh curry leaves (if you have) and finally put “Oggarane”
(Tarka/Bhagaar/Phodni in Hindi or Urdu) with mustard seeds , Godambi (cashew nuts) and
a pinch of Hing added to it.
Note: Traditionally Bisi Bele HuLiyanna contains only the daal, rice, and tamarind as
given above. The HOTEL version of this bhaath contains vegetables of sorts,which is not
the traditional style,but is only the version popularised by hoteliers. It is upto individuals
to put sweetish vegetables such as peas, carrots etc,but onion is generally never used since
it takes the flavour in an entirely different direction (inion dominates).
Useful Hints: The same powder can be used to make the vegetable Bhaath, Vaangi Bhaath
etc. Here, cook the rice with a little short of water (to keep it from becoming soggy).
Spread the cooked rice to cool. In a separate pan with 2 spoons of oil heated, put in
mustard, after they split/splash (putr … putr…..putr), add a pinch of turmuric and then put a
piece or two of broken red chili (depending on how hot you want,add more) put 1 handful
of groundnuts (cashews if you prefer)fry them for a few seconds,add curry leaves. Now put
the cut vegetables or Badane Kaayi (baingon or egg plant) if it is vaangi-bhaath. Turn
around, cover the lid and cook or low fire. After the vegetables are done, put salt to taste.
Allow cooling time. Put the cooled rice, put 2-3 table of the sambar powder, little salt
(only to make-up for the rice now added). Add freshly grated coconut (fresh coconut pieces
put in dry grinder and done), Mix with hand well using 1-2 table spoon of oil and also at
this time squeeze in the juice of half a lime. Keep it away for an hour or so. Reheat (in
oven/microwave) before serving.

3 thoughts on “Bisi BeLe HuLiyanna Courtesy: K. raghunandana”

  1. Your recipe looks very traditional and yummy.I intend to try it out and if tastes as good as it sounds I intend to introduce the same in my restaurant.Thanks.

  2. Niiva heLida bisi beLe huLiyanna tumba ruchiyaagide nija. I use sambar powder in stead of baath-powder. But the last is much better. Thank you for the receipe.

  3. Hi Raghu,
    Although I liked your recipe, I do not agree with your statement “Traditionally Bisi Bele HuLiyanna contains only the daal, rice, and tamarind” . For 50-60 years I have known bisi belebath to contain vegetables.

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