After many years of making Peas Pulao, one does get a little bored of it. Don’t get me wrong. I love a regular peas pulao but sometimes, we just want to try new things. With different cuisines every 200km, I don’t need to look too far into the Indian cuisine for inspiration. Meet Vatana Bhat!
Vatana Bhat is a popular rice dish made with fresh or dried peas, a mix of fresh spices – coconut, coriander, ginger, and garlic and a little of a very typical Maharashtrian spice mix, the Goda Masala. Growing up, Amma didn’t make pulaos but made many varieties of vegetable rice and called them all as ‘kalandha sadham’, literally meaning mixed rice – this one is similar to that however, it can be cooked like a ‘pulao’
If you like experimenting with rice dishes, then you should try this. It is a very flavourful dish and is quite easy to make too. Ideally, you should use goda masala but that can be substituted with garam masala, if you do not have access to it.
Vatana Bhat | Vatanyacha Bhat | Maharashtrian Peas Pulao
- ½ cup green vatana, soaked overnight (or substitute with fresh peas, frozen peas)
- 1 tbsp ghee (substitute with oil for vegan )
- 1 small piece kalpasi/stone flower/dagad phool (highly recommend adding it)
- ½ tsp cumin seeds
- ½ tsp mustard seeds
- ½ cup onion finely chopped (about 1 medium onion)
- ½ cup tomatoes finely chopped
- ½ cup basmati rice (soaked for 15 minutes)
- 1 tsp goda masala (or use 1/2 tsp garam masala)
- ½ tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 cup water
To grind to a coarse paste
- 1 inch ginger
- 3 garlic cloves
- 2 green chillies
- ¼ cup coriander leaves (about a handful)
- 3 tbsp dried coconut
- Grind the ingredients given for a paste into a coarse mix. If necessary, add a tsp of water but ideally, none.
- To a 2L pressure cooker on medium flame (Induction 800W), add the oil and ghee, followed by the stone flower, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, the coriander chilli spice mix and fry it for a minute
- Now, add the onions and once it is translucent add the chopped tomatoes.
- Add turmeric, salt and goda masala. Then add the soaked peas and 1 cup water. Let the water come to a boil
- Add the soaked, drained basmati rice and mix well.
- Close the cooker, place the weight and turn flame to low (Induction 400W) for 7 minutes or two whistles, whichever is earlier. Ensure the flame is not higher than low.
- Let pressure fully settle ( takes 7-10 minutes). The delicious Vatana Bhat is ready!
- To garnish this dish, add some freshly grated coconut and roasted peanuts!
- This dish can be done with dried peas, frozen or fresh peas.
- If using dried peas, soak overnight and cook for 2 whistles with the rice. The recipe above is for the dried peas
- If using fresh peas, add along with the rice and cook for 2 whistles.
- If using frozen peas, add after the rice and cook only for 1 whistle for 5 minutes. Let it rest for 7-8 minutes and open.
This dish was incredible! I absolutely loved how different and flavourful it was. The stone flower adds a certain earthiness that is hard to explain. Goda Masala, if you have it is recommended. It is a heady mix of spices. If you are interested in making one, here’s a recipe from the amazing Dasanna – Goda Masala recipe.
If you live in Australia, these are from Marathi Swad. They are available in Indian stores, but you can also order online.
Want more interesting rice recipes?
Please leave a comment below if you made this recipe, have any questions or thoughts! Your comment will help me learn more about your preferences and will help other readers.
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