Pappu Biyyam / Pabbiyyam / Chana dal Rice

'Pappu' means dal in telugu and 'Biyyam' means rice,so if you combine both it literally means 'Dal Rice'.This is a typical dish prepared only in the Telangana region of Andhra.My parents used to stay in Khammam for several years before I was born,which comes under Telangana region and that is where my mom has learnt this from her neighbor.She used to do it occasionally and some how my brother has developed a special liking for it and he always used to ask her to make this rice and gradually it became a part of our menu at home.This is usually made either for breakfast or for lunch or dinner as it is a single pot meal.My mom used to give this rice for our lunch boxes as this does not require any side dish and is very easy to prepare provided you have soaked chana dal in hand.One more interesting thing about this rice is there are no whole spices in this rice other than the natural flavors,the sweetness of chana dal is enhanced with the special flavor of garlic.You need to use more garlic for this as that is the key ingredient in providing the flavor for the dish.If you are a garlic lover this rice is definitely a treat for you.this rice is really a saver when we run out of vegetables as this requires very basic ingredients which are always available in our pantry.I am posting the more authentic version of it,if you want to add mixed vegetables you can add but to taste the real pappu biyyam you need to make it with out adding them.Pickles like Andhra Avakay(mango pickle) or allam Avakay (Ginger flavored mango pickle)would be a awesome combination with this rice.
1 cup regular Rice like sona masuri(I used jeeraga samba,you can even use basmati)
1/2 cup chana dal
2 big onions,sliced or roughly diced
14-15 garlic pods,keep the skin on
4-5 green chillies,slit
a sprig of curry leaves
juice of 1/2 lemon
a pinch of turmeric(optional)
1 tbsp chana dal,for tadka
2 tsp urad dal
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
2 tbsp oil or 1tbsp oil and 1 tbsp ghee
salt to taste

Soak rice and chana dal for half an hour.If you are using sona masuri or similar rice soak for half an hour,if you are using basmati or jeeraga samba soak it for 10-12 mins.If you are hurry and did not soak chana dal,boil chana dal in hot water until it is soft but still firm.Separate the garlic pods from the whole garlic but do retain the thin layer of garlic pods.In that way it does not become mushy after it is cooked as this is the main ingredient which gives so much of flavor to rice.In a pressure cooker or thick bottomed kadai heat oil/ghee and crackle the mustard seeds.Add chana dal(for tadka) and urad dal and fry until brown.Add a sprig of washed curry leaves and add slitted ans sliced green chillies and fry well.Add sliced/diced onions,turmeric and garlic pods and fry until the onions turn translucent.Add soaked and drained chana dal and fry for a couple of minutes.Add 2 cups of water if you are using sona masuri,otherwise use 1 and 3/4 th cups of water if using basmati or jeeraga samba and let it come to a boil.Once the water starts boiling add soaked and drained rice and salt and lemon juice and stir well and close the lid and pressure cook for 1 whistle and simmer the flame for 6-8 mins.If you are using thick bottomed kadai,close the lid and let it cook until the water is evaporated.Serve it hot with raitha,papad and pickle.I served it with tomato raitha,allam avakay and papad.

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