Main Course, One Pot Meals

Karnataka special Avalakki Bisibelebhath | Flattened rice Bisibelebhath

Avalakki BisibeleBhath, and an emotion !

Call it comfort food, call it quintessential South Karnataka food, Bisibele Bhath (sorry please don’t call it Sambhar Saadam) rules the roost and belly for most people from Karnataka. 

Hailing from Bangalore (but living in another city now), I often have cravings for simple but delicious dishes from Karnataka like:

Mysore special Kempakki Dosa (a.k.a Rajamudi Akki dosa)

Davangere Benne Dosey (Davanegere special Crispy golden butter dosa)

upahara Darshini Sambhar (for serious Sambhar afficionados only :p)

Menthye Bataani Bhaath (one pot dish with fresh fenugreek leaves)

Avarekaalu Uppittu (seasonal fresh field beans upma)

Maddur vade (a crispy vada made with rice flour, semolina and seasoning)

Mandya Thatte Idli

Aromatic melt in the mouth Bonda Soup

Bangalore Special Masala Poori Chaat (no explanation required!)

Mandakki Oggarane (tempered puffed rice snack from North Karnataka)

You get the drift, right?  Well, bisibelebhath tops the list and we make it often.  But not as often as this avalakki bisibele Bhath. I have fond memories of my co-worker (at my first job ever) carrying this often in her lunch box, and she would promptly swap this for my curd rice. 

Simple lives without whatsapp or even mobile phones. When people actually communicated with each other, everyday, every single minute. Face to face !

Ahem! I digress. 

A Karnataka special One Pot Meal made with Lentils, veggies and flattened rice spiced with an aromatic powder.  Pin

What is the main ingredient in this Avalakki Bisibelebhath?

Avalakki or flattened rice or beaten rice (aka poha)  is a regular ingredient in Karnataka breakfast – from Set Dosa to Poha Idli (Avalakki Idli) to this bisibele Bhath.

Unlike the original bisibelebhath recipe which has a quick pressure cooker version, we prefer to make each component of this dish individually and bring it together to simmer for a few mins before the final tadka and ta-da! Comfort food beckons!

A Karnataka special One Pot Meal made with Lentils, veggies and flattened rice spiced with an aromatic powder.Pin

Let’s get to making this yummilicious avalakki bisibele bhath

Prep time -15 mins, cook time -20 mins, Serves – 4

What you need:

  • 1/2 cup split pigeon pea (toor dal)
  • 1.5 cups flattened rice (thick variety poha)
  • 2 Tbsp oil (split use)
  • 1.5 Tsp salt 
  • 1 tsp thick tamarind paste 
  • 2 cups mixed vegetables (I used carrot, beans , peas, ash gourd)
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric 

For the spice mixture of bisibele bhath powder 

  • 3 TBSP Bengal Gram (Channa Dal)
  • 2 tsp Split black gram (Urad Dal)
  • 2 Tbsp coriander seeds(dhaniya)
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
  • 1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds(methi)
  • 4 red chillies 
  • 2 kashmiri red chillies 
  • 1 clove 
  • 1 inch cardamom 
  • 1 Kapok bud (marathi moggu)
  • 2 Tbsp dry coconut 

Tempering

  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 sprig curry leaves 

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A Karnataka special One Pot Meal made with Lentils, veggies and flattened rice spiced with an aromatic powder.Pin

How to make avalakki bisi bele bhath

  1. Wash and soak toor dal for 15 mins, meanwhile wash and chop all veggies into equal sized portions. Similarly wash and soak the poha for 2 mins, drain in a colander , cover and reserve. 
  2. In a pan, add 1 tsp oil.roast the ingredients for the spice mix in the order given, switch off the stove and then add dry coconut. Cool the mixture throughly and blitz into powder.
  3. In a very thick bottomed pan or a pressure cooker pan, add 2 cups of water and the turmeric. Once it comes to a rolling boil, add the soaked toor dal and let  it cook to 3/4 (takes about 15 mins). 
  4. Now add the tamarind paste and veggies, cover and cook till Veggies are done 80%.
  5. Add salt, freshly ground bisibele bhath powder and mix it through. Keep stirring it regularly with a long ladke as dal tends to burn at the bottom. Add 1 tsp of oil at this stage and mix it throughly. 
  6. The dal will be 90%_95% cooked now. Add the soaked poha and keep mixing it , adding 1/4 cup of hot water additionally if required .  The poha cooks very quickly and you need to keep mixing the pan to avoid it getting burnt . Do a taste check now and adjust if needed.
  7. After 5 mins, switch off (the bisi bele bhath thickens after a while)
  8. Prepare tempering with remaining oil. Splutter mustard seeds and curry leaves and add to the bhath
  9. Yummy avalakki bisibele bhath is ready.
  10. Serve hot with a dollop of ghee, some fryums / papad on the side
A Karnataka special One Pot Meal made with Lentils, veggies and flattened rice spiced with an aromatic powder.Pin
A Karnataka special One Pot Meal made with Lentils, veggies and flattened rice spiced with an aromatic powder.Pin
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5 from 7 votes

Avalakki Bisibelebhath

A Karnataka special One Pot Meal made with Lentils, veggies and flattened rice spiced with an aromatic powder.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian, South Indian
Keyword Can be Vegan, Flattened Rice, Gluten Free, Karnataka cuisine, Main Course, One Pot Meal
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4
Author Kalyani

Equipment

  • Bowl
  • Cutting Board
  • Knife
  • Thick Bottomed Pan

Ingredients

  • ½ cup split pigeon pea toor dal
  • 1.5 cups Flattened Rice thick variety poha
  • 2 Tbsp Oil split use
  • 1.5 Tsp salt
  • 1 tsp thick tamarind paste
  • 2 cups Mixed vegetables I used carrot, beans , peas, ash gourd
  • tsp Turmeric

For the spice mixture of bisibele bhath powder 

  • 3 TBSP Bengal Gram Channa dal
  • 2 tsp split black gram Urad Dal
  • 2 Tbsp Coriander seeds dhaniya
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds jeera
  • ¼ tsp fenugreek seeds methi
  • 4 Dry Red Chillies
  • 2 kashmiri red chillies
  • 1 clove
  • 1 inch Cardamom
  • 1 kapok bud marathi moggu
  • 2 Tbsp Dry Coconut

Tempering

  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1 sprig curry leaves

Instructions

  • Wash and soak toor dal for 15 mins, meanwhile wash and chop all veggies into equal sized portions. Similarly wash and soak the poha for 2 mins, drain in a colander , cover and reserve.
  • In a pan, add 1 tsp oil.roast the ingredients for the spice mix in the order given, switch off the stove and then add dry coconut. Cool the mixture throughly and blitz into powder.
  • In a very thick bottomed pan or a pressure cooker pan, add 2 cups of water and the turmeric. Once it comes to a rolling boil, add the soaked toor dal and let  it cook to 3/4 (takes about 15 mins).
  • Now add the tamarind paste and veggies, cover and cook till Veggies are done 80%.
  • Add salt, freshly ground bisibele bhath powder and mix it through. Keep stirring it regularly with a long ladke as dal tends to burn at the bottom. Add 1 tsp of oil at this stage and mix it throughly.
  • The dal will be 90%_95% cooked now. Add the soaked poha and keep mixing it , adding 1/4 cup of hot water additionally if required .  The poha cooks very quickly and you need to keep mixing the pan to avoid it getting burnt . Do a taste check now and adjust if needed.
  • After 5 mins, switch off (the bisi bele bhath thickens after a while)
  • Prepare tempering with remaining oil. Splutter mustard seeds and curry leaves and add to the bhath
  • Yummy avalakki bisibele bhath is ready
  • Serve hot with a dollop of ghee, some fryums / papad on the side

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14 Comments

  1. Seema Sriram @mildlyindian

    5 stars
    Quickcooking bisibelebaths are perfect comfort on a cold winter night. The prospect of not having to stay for long in a cold kitchen after work excites me. I am surely trying this bisibelebath with the thick poha.

  2. Mayuri Patel

    5 stars
    Interesting recipe Kalyani, I’ve tasted the bisibele bhath with normal rice. Using flat rice or poha is new for me. A delicious looking recipe and so flavourful. Also like your homemade spice mixture. Avalakki bisibele Bhath is good way to include more flat rice in one’s diet.

  3. 5 stars
    I completely agree Kalyani – bisi bele bath is an emotion! It is one of my favourites too! This twist with poha looks fabulous! Got to try it asap!

  4. 5 stars
    I have tasted avalakki bisi bele bhath once and had loved the taste. Plus love teh fact that it does not need a long cooking time. I have to make this bhat this festive season we will love it. Thanks Kalyani.

  5. Jayashree T.Rao

    5 stars
    Avalakki bisebelebath is a regular feature at home. Here I use moong dal instead of turdal and it tastes equally good. It cooks faster for the busy mornings. Your bowl looks delicious.

  6. 5 stars
    I have tasted bisi bele bhat but not this version and this sounds really interesting. I will definitely try this recipe.

  7. Preethi Prasad

    5 stars
    Karnataka style Avalaki bisibelebath looks scrumptious. I love hot Bisibelebath with sandige and pickle. Would love to fry your recipe with avalakki. My family will love it .

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