Bisi Bele Bhaat

An easy recipe for a spicy rice and lentil dish, taken from The Spicery’s newest cookbook – Curry Legend Veg!

Bristol based company, The Spicery, specialises in recipe kit creation; they measure, grind and blend spices freshly before sending them to tens of thousands of home cooks around the world. More recently, they’ve launched the Curry Legend Cookbook Kit – a combination of a cookbook with 4 special spice blends that can be used to make any of the recipes in the book!

This recipe for Bisi Bele Bhaat is taken from the newest member of the Curry Legend series of cookbooks – Curry Legend Veg – which features over 80 brand new recipes that give vegetables the starring role!

Each of the four special Curry Legend blends are available on The Spicery’s website, or you could use the suggested substitutions in the recipe for a similar result.

SERVES 4 • Prep time: 10 minutes • Cooking time: 50 minutes
  • 2 medium carrots – peeled and cut into bite-size pieces
  • 125g green beans – cut into bite-size pieces
  • 3 tomatoes – cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 cloves of garlic – thinly sliced
  • 10g bunch of coriander – finely chopped
  • 150g basmati or standard long grain rice (not easy cook)
  • 100g yellow split peas
  • ½ tsp 2 tbsp desiccated coconut
  • 2 tsp HALDI BLEND or 1 tsp of turmeric
  • 3 tsp METHI BLEND or 1 ½ tsp garam masala
  • ½ tsp MIRCHI BLEND or ½ tsp chilli powder
  • 2 tsp JEERA BLEND or 1 tsp whole cumin seeds
  1. Boil the carrots, tomatoes, yellow split peas and 2 tsp HALDI BLEND in 1.2l water in a covered pan for 25 minutes until the split peas are beginning to soften.
  2. Toast the desiccated coconut in a dry pan for 2 minutes or until golden then mix with 3 tsp METHI BLEND and ½ tsp MIRCHI BLEND to make the toasted coconut podi powder.
  3. Add the rice, green beans, ¾ of the toasted coconut podi powder (save the remaining mix to add at the table) and 1 ½ tsp salt to the yellow split pea mixture then cover and cook for 20 minutes or until the rice and yellow split peas are cooked through and you have a thick pulpy soup, a bit like a slightly wet risotto.
  4. Fry 2 tsp JEERA BLEND and the garlic in 2 tbsp hot oil for 30 seconds or until the seeds just start to pop and jump around, then pour all of the spices, garlic and oil over the top of the bisi bele bhaat.
  5. Stir the juice of ½ the lemon into the bisi bele bhaat then serve with the remaining toasted coconut podi powder, coriander and remaining ½ lemon cut into wedges on the side.