#14 Ayurvedic Jungle Remedies And A Very Comforting Rice

It’s been a really annoying couple of weeks! to say the least. my neighbour Madhuri blames December, she says it’s the last month of the year and lots of accidents happen, i am not sure if there is a blame and it really doesn’t make a difference, it happened. I was trying really hard to practice everything i have been working on in Yoga classes, especially the meditation part but it didn’t seem to work that well…

last Saturday my friend Lishay who is visiting Goa lost control of the bike he was driving and i was on it too, so we both fell off with the bike on top of us and the result is me with a sprained foot and a sprained knee.

I was in bed for 3 days, on crutches and unable to really do anything which was frustrating in so many ways.

After 2 very sore and uncomfortable days my neighbor Kunal told me about this Ayurvedic doctor in a village near by who apparently has this remedy to help sprains and fractures, I am a big believer in natural remedies so off we set to find the man. We drove to a village near by and found a little hut, i got out of the car and got a great green plastic chair to sit on in front of the hut, waiting for the doctor to come, apparently he went to pick some herbs, leaves and tree bark, so i waited.

When the doctor arrived, he was barefoot, wearing a very old and ragged Paul Smith t-shirt, at least he had style! he had a bag full of leaves and roots, he started crushing and rolling until it all became a very sticky paste. When the paste was ready he looked at my foot, pouring some alcohol over it and massaging very carefully to reduce swelling, then he took some newspaper, spread the paste over it and placed on my foot, wrapping it up with a bandage. The doctor then did the same for my knee. i was told to wet the bandage 2-3 times a day to keep the paste moist and leave on for 4 days.

This is by far the weirdest thing i did in India until now but it seemed to work and my foot did feel better.

My other half tried to ask the doctor what he put in the paste and he said he cant tell him, our neighbour Kunal said that it s a secret that is passed on from father to son and that he will never tell. When we asked him how much we owe him, he said whatever you think is fine, I found that amazing!

As i wasn’t well and couldnt really stand and cook my lovely friend and neighbour Madhuri cooked for us, she made some veg bhajis and a really comforting vegetable rice, i find rice really comforting when i am not well.

I finally managed to get back into the kitchen this week and made the rice, it was just as good! so i am sharing the recipe for your comforting moments.

Here in India, rice is cooked in a cooker, i actually love the cooker and i really think it makes a diffrence.

If you don’t have a cooker then i would suggest using frozen or cooked peas as they take some time, the rest should be the same.

The rice uses a Masala – a mix of spices that you will need to prepare in advance and a paste that will also need to be pre-made.

Vegetable comforting rice

What you will need

For the Masala

  • 7 x Peppercorns
  • 10 x Cloves
  • 2-3 x Cinnamon sticks crushed

Place all the spices in a grinder and grind to create a powder, you will need 1/2 TBSP of the powder, the rest you can save in a jar and use again.

For the Green Paste 

  • 1/2 x Bunch fresh coriander
  • 4cm x fresh Ginger
  • 6x Garlic cloves
  • 1 x Green chili

Blend all the ingredients to a smooth paste, if you have some left over you can use to marinate fish or tofu.

For the Rice

  • 2 x TBSP olive oil
  • 2 x TBSP butter (if you are vegan don’t use butter)
  • 2 x Cups Basmati rice, soaked and drained
  • 4 x Cups of boiling water
  • 2 x Chopped onions
  • 2 x Chopped carrots
  • A handful of chopped green beans
  • 1 x Cup of peas, if they are fresh then soak and cook separately, if they are frozen, add as is
  • 2 x Split cardamom pods
  • 1 x TSP salt
  • 1/2 TSP masala powder
  • 2-3 TBSP green paste

Let’s Get Started

  • In the cooker, heat some oil and butter
  • Add onions and fry until golden brown

  • Add green beans and mix for 2 minutes
  • Add Masala powder and mix

  • Add green paste, carrots and cardamom pods, mix all together

  • Add peas and rice, mix well

  • add boiling water and salt, mix again

  • cover the cooker and cook until 2 whistles are heard, then remove from heat, let the cooker finish it’s cycle and the rice is ready to eat!
  • Serve on it’s own or with some nice fish or a veg dish on the side


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