Sunday, February 14, 2010


Bisi bele bhath is a famous rice-based dish Karnataka. Bisi-bele-bhath translates to hot-lentil-rice in the Kannada language. It is also known as Bisi bele huliyanna. The preparation of this dish is quite elaborate, involving preparation of spice powder. The spices used, contribute to the unique flavor and taste of this dish. It is served hot along with boondi or potato chips.
The best place to savor this dish in Bangalore is MTR or Mavalli Tiffin Room. However, the MTR branded ready-to-eats are nothing great to be bragged about. So is the spice powder - it is best when prepared fresh.
Here’s my MIL’s recipe for BBB. She makes wonderfully tasty BBB, which can easily compete with the MTR BBB :)

Bisi Bele Bhath

Preparation time : 15 min
Cooking time : 25 min
Serves : 5-6

Rice - 2 cups
Tur Dal - 1 ½ cups
Chopped Vegetables (Beans, Carrot, Potato, Onion, peas) - together 2 cups, all chopped into ½” pcs
Salt - 1 tsp
Coconut - 1 ½ Tbsp, grated - fresh or dry
Tamarind pulp - 1 Tbsp, adjust acc to taste
Jaggery - 1 big marble sized ball
Oil - ½ Tbsp
Butter - ½ Tbsp, optional
Turmeric - 1 pinch
Salt - 1 tsp, adjust acc to taste

For the powder:
Chana dal - 2 tsp
Urad dal - 2 tsp
Dry red chilies - 8-10
Cinnamon - 1” stick
Coriander seeds - 2 tsp
Cloves - 5-6
Maratha Moggu - 2
Cardamon - 2
Poppy seeds - 2 tsp
Curry leaves - 2 sprigs

For tempering:Cooking oil - 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Groundnut seeds - 1 tbsp
Curry leaves - 2-3 strands
Red chilies - 1
Turmeric - 1 pinch

For BBB powder:
• Dry roast all the ingredients
• Allow to cool for 5 minutes
• Grind them into slightly coarse powder
• This can be made in larger quantity and preserved for a couple of months

Bisi Bele Bath:• Pressure cook dal and vegetables with a pinch of turmeric in sufficient water
• Cook rice separately
• Mix the cooked rice into the cooked dal and vegetable pan
• Add tamarind pulp, salt, jaggery, BBB powder and bring to boil
• Add grated coconut and mix thoroughly
• Stir in between. Adjust the amount of water as per required consistency.
• After boiling well for about 10 minutes, turn off the flame and add butter and mix

• Heat oil in a pan
• Add mustard seeds and allow to sputter
• Turn the heat low, add groundnut seeds, and stir
• After the groundnuts are half-done, add curry leaves and red chili pieces and stir for half a minute till all the ingredients are properly roasted. Keep aside till needed
• Mix the tempering to the BBB just before serving to retain the crispness of the groundnuts

Tips n Tricks:
• Do not make rice too mushy mushy
• Make the BBB a little watery. It absorbs the water and gets thickened after sometime.

• An onion can be sautéed and added along with the tempering
• An alternate method is to add all the raw ingredients and pressure cook the entire mixture at one go. However, my preference is the elaborate method.


  1. Hello, coming here for the first time. I love Bisibelebath and is one of my favourites. In the BBB powder, u've mentioned an ingredient as Maratha Moggu. What is this and where is it available?

  2. I am a great fan of bisibelebath. Looks yummy! New here.

  3. @ M D
    Thanks for visiting. Maratha Moggu is a spice available in most outlets. Check this link for more info -

    @ Padhu
    Thanks! Keep visiting :)

  4. @ M D
    Thanks for visiting. Maratha Moggu is a spice available in most outlets. Check this link for more info -

    @ Padhu
    Thanks! Keep visiting :)

  5. Thanks a lot for ur recipe!
    How many spoons of BBB powder should add to above recipe?

  6. @ Anon
    If you use this quantity mentioned above, you'll need all of it. In case you want to store for further use, double or triple the quantities and use half or one third of it.


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