Bisi bele bath step-by-step recipe with photos.
About this recipe
Bisi bele bath – probably the first dish that comes to anyone’s mind when they think of food from Karnataka. Bisi bele bath means ‘hot lentil rice’ in Kannada, popularly known as BBB or bisi bele hulianna. Rice, pigeon pea lentil, vegetables cooked with freshly ground spices and finished with a generous helping of ghee or clarified butter – this dish ticks all the boxes. Tasty, healthy, nutritious, and extremely flavourful, this is a wholesome dish. This dish tastes best when made with ghee. But if you want to make a vegan version, skip the ghee and use oil instead.
I make this dish with homemade bisi bele bath masala powder. I then cook rice and vegetables together and add boiled pigeon pea lentil along with fresh masala powder. I then slow cook everything together and finish off with a simple tempering made with ghee.
I have shared the detailed recipe for making the bisi bele masala powder. I usually make a small amount of spice powder and use it up. However, you can double/triple the quantity and make a large batch of the spice mix. Store it in the refrigerator and use it as and when needed.
This masala powder is readily available in the market but making it at home makes the dish absolutely aromatic, flavourful, and delicious. It is really simple to make it too. Do give it a try and let me know how you like it.
Step by step instructions
1. Freshly made masala powder. The recipe for bisi bele bath masala powder is here.
2. Heat ghee and prepare the tempering (seasoning) with mustard seeds, cumin seeds, curry leaves, ginger paste and hing
3. Add carrots and potatoes
4. Add the soaked rice. Add salt and water, and let it cook
5. Add remaining vegetables, cooked dal, tamarind pulp, jaggery, and masala powder. (You can pressure cook the dal beforehand)
6. Let it simmer until it all comes together and the vegetables are cooked
Bisi bele bath
- 3-4 tablespoon bisi bele bath masala powder see notes
- 2 cups rice
- 1.5 cups pigeon pea (toor dal)
- 1 medium potato cut into small cubes
- 2 medium carrots cut into small cubes
- ½ cup beans cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1 small capsicum cut into small pieces
- ½ cup cauliflower
- ¼ cup peas
- ¼ cup hyacinth bean (avarekalu)
- 1 tablespoon tamarind pulp
- A small piece jaggery
- Salt to taste
For tempering (seasoning)
- 4-5 tablespoon ghee
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- A small pinch asafoetida (hing)
- 4-5 curry leaves
- 1 teaspoon ginger paste
- 4-5 cashew
- Wash the rice thoroughly and soak it for 30 minutes
- Boil the toor dal in a pressure cooker and set aside
- Heat a large frying pan or kadhai and add 4 tablespoon ghee. Add mustard seeds and let it splutter
- Add cumin seeds, hing, curry leaves, and ginger paste
- Add carrot and pototes and mix well
- Drain all the water from the rice and add it to the pan
- Add salt and water, and bring it to boil. Cover and simmer until the rice is almost cooked
- Now add boiled dal, rest of the vegetables, tamarind extract, and spice powder. Add some water to adjust the consistency. Bisi bele bath is slightly runny and thin so add water accordingly
- Simmer for 20-25 minutes. Keep stirring every few minutes
- In another small pan, heat 1 tablespoon ghee. Fry till the cashew is golden
- Add the cashew along with the ghee over the bisi bele bath and mix well
- Serve hot with papad and raita