This is a traditional dish usually prepared during the beginning of the mango season (early
spring) when sour, unripe mango (kuchcha) becomes available. They are used when the
mango is big but pulp has not yet started turning yellow.
2-3 green unripe mangoes
Handful of peanuts (kadalekaayi beeja)
7-8 cashewnuts (godambi)
2-3 teaspoonful of bengal gram (Kadale’ beLe’ or Chana daal)
4-5 green chilies
a handful of chopped kothumbari soppu (dhaniya leaves, coriander leaves)
8-10 curry leaves (karibevina soppu, karivapalai)
a pinch of arishina (haldi, Manjal, turmeric)
a pinch of hing (asafetida)
a teaspoon of Saasuve’ (mustard)
A handful of grated coconut (preferably freshly grated, but the dry variety from stores may
be used if it is the unsweetened variety).
1 lb or 1/2 Kg of plain rice (long grain, not basmati or jasmine).
Keep the rice in a rice cooker, with a little short on water, so that when cooked, the rice
will be non-sticky and separate.
Cut the mangoes, remove the seed. Grate the green mango pieces. It is essential that the
mangoes are not ripe and are sour to taste. If they are not sour, use half a piece of lime’s
juice to make up for the sour taste. After grating the mangoes, keep the pulp aside. Take the
grated coconut and a teaspoon of mustard, 3-4 green chilies, in a dry grinder, grind them
well. This should provide a fine, freshly ground mustard flavour. Add the mango pulp,
grind for a short period, take the paste out and keep it aside.
In a separate banale” (wok) or non-stick vessel, take 2-3 table spoons of oil, warm it up on
a low fire. Add the Kadale’ beLe’, groundnut seeds, fry them well, add godambi (optional),
after the whole thing starts to turn golden brown, add the chopped coriander leaves and
curry leaves. Add a pinch of turmeric (arishina) and a pinch of hing (asafetida). For hot
flavour half a piece of red chili can be added. Move all the things to the edge
(circumference) and keep the middle part clear. Add just one teaspoon of oil, add the
ground paste (coconut,green chili, mustard and mango pulp) to this centre part and slowly
turn around for a minute or two till the musky green colour of mango pulp changes to a
milder green. The key is to mellow the fresh sour taste but “not to overcook” which can
completely change the sour taste to a bitter taste. Switch off the fire mix all the things
(centre and circumference) and allow it to cool. Spread the cooked rice evenly on top of it,
allow all of it to cool. Add salt to taste, and turn around the whole thing by hand (softly) so
that the rice mixes well and evenly with the paste and the fried ingredients. Add 1 spoon of
ghee while turning around, to give a fine flavour. Allow it to sit for an hour or two before
serving. This rice can be reheated in a microwave before serving.
Useful hints: The same procedure can be followed to make nimbehannina chitranna (lemon
rice). Instead of the mango, the juice of one/two lime can be squeezed in to provide the
sour taste. He’raLe’ kaayi (jumbo lime) or cranburry or cooking apple can be used instead
of mango, to provide different flavours of sour taste, depending on the season. All of them
make equally fine rice dish.
Usually prepared on festivals, special holidays, or at times at a special request by the
pregnant women ..(Bayake) 🙂
Enjoy this fine saltish sour delicacy from Karnataka. It makes a great change from the bland
bread/cornflakes routine for many.