Saturday, December 8, 2012
Santra Bhat / Orange flavored sweet rice
Yesterday Mr AJ came home from work with a ginormous box of Florida oranges . And the oranges are huge . Though happy , my first thought was how are we going to finish so many oranges before they go bad ? Without realizing both of us were going down the memory lane . Winter ,the month of December , the winter assembly session and market full of oranges . We come from the Orange city ,Nagpur . It's the time when you feel refreshed with the sweet and citrusy scent of oranges in the air . I remember my childhood days when dad would come home with 'shekda ' meaning 100 oranges and we never worried about finishing them . A guest was welcomed with a basket full of oranges and family and formal gatherings were incomplete without them . The sweets shops were always busy with the santra burfi as the ministers ,their staff and people from mantralaya would place large orders of santra burfi and oranges to distribute and take home . On home front mom would make Santra Bhaat which is a variation of Sakharbhaat . The memories of home made me make this dish today .
Traditionally this is a part of main course and made on special occasions . It's made when oranges are in season as they are super sweet and not tangy . The rice is easy to make and is done in no time . This can be eaten warm as a main course or chilled or at room temperature as a dessert . The oranges I have are so big , I decided to serve the bhaat in orange peel rather than in a dish . That enhances the flavor of the bhaat and give it a nice aroma . Let's roll our sleeves and head to the kitchen ...
1 cup rice
2 Tbsp Ghee
1 cup chopped orange segments
1 cup water
1 cup freshly sqeezed orange juice
1 Tbsp orange zest
1/4 cup sugar
pinch of salt
6 pods of cardamom
2 Tbsp almond and pistachio slivers
1 Tbsp pistachio slivers
a few orange segments
remaing orange halves left after juicing
To proceed :
1) Wash and soak the rice for half hour .
2) Drain the water from rice .
3) Heat ghee in a heavy bottom pan and add cloves to it .
4) Add the rice and roast till the grains look shiny .
5) Boil 1 cup of water and add it to the rice .
6) Add a pinch of salt .
7) Cook the rice halfway .
8) Add chopped orange segments and continue cooking .
9) Powder the cardamoms along with sugar .
10 ) When the rice is 80% done add freshly squeezed orange juice and sugar cardamom powder and the orange zest .
11) Cover and cook till the rice is done .
12 ) Add almond and pistachio slivers and cover and let it steam for 2 mins .
To serve :
Serve in orange halves and garnish with slivered pistachios and orange segments .
**Orange zest actually gives that orangy aroma to the rice .
** If the orange half is not sitting well , you can cut a thin slice to make it flat .
** If you don't want the rice to touch the orange half , you can line it with a paper cupcake liner and fill it with the rice .