Gooseberry rice/Nellikkai Rice – Lunch box alternative

nellikkai rice, gooseberry riceWhat women think? What’s the latest fall/winter collection going to be? Should I buy Gucci or Mochi or Adda-chi? How can I vilify my mother in law/daughter in law? Is my hair falling too much? Wrong! Except maybe the last one. They don’t think any of these crappy things that TV shows or beauty parlour magazines (I don’t know if people actually buy these magazines) would have you think. What real women actually think – “What do I pack for lunch tomorrow?” I am not fully into the lunch-box grind yet as my kids are yet to start full-time school (the elder one will start June this year)but I already have a fair idea how it’s going to look like. My husband is the biggest kid, and he is so picky that most dishes are ruled out and I have to work within a very small circle. This small circle includes variety rice dishes – seasoned rice that is dry and tastes just as good when not hot.

The Nellikkai rice/Gooseberry rice that I am posting today is a new twist on the usual lemon/coconut rice dishes and is a clever way to incorporate gooseberry into your food. Unlike the raw Nellikkai, the Nellikkai rice doesn’t taste cringingly sour, it tastes tangy, nutty and wonderfully fresh. You can serve nellikkai rice paired with a spicy curry like the eggplant pepper masala that I posted earlier. It is a great lunch box option as well. Gooseberry has so many health benefits – strengthens hair, improves eye-sight, helps control diabetes and cholesterol, strengthens heart, builds resistance against infection and so much more that it makes sense to make gooseberry part of your regular diet.

Preparation time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 10 mins
Serves: 4


Gooseberry/Nellikkai – 7 big ones pitted and grated
Peanuts – a handful
Ginger – 1 inch peeled and minced
Green chilli – 2 slit lengthwise
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Split Black gram dal/Urad dal – 2 tsp
Jeera/Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Curry leaves – 1 stem
Oil – 2 tbsp
Salt to taste
Coriander leaves – a handful for garnishing
Cooked Rice – 4 cups


1.      Heat oil in a kadai and when hot add mustard seeds. Let splutter. Drop in the peanuts and fry till they colour.
2.      Then add urad dal, cumin, curry leaves, minced ginger and green chillies and sauté till the urad dal starts colouring.
3.      Throw in the grated nellikkai/gooseberry, add salt and fry for 2-3 minutes. Switch off when it is about to start colouring.
4.      Mix the nellikkai mixture with cooked rice and garnish with coriander leaves. Serve.
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