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Healthy Vegetarian Foods

Vagharelo Bhaat (Tempered Rice)

“No Waste” is a popular “mantra” in Guajarati homes – you cannot even imagine the ways in which we use leftovers to create tasty, “fresh” meals and this recipe echoes the sentiment of this mantra

Vagharelo bhaat (tempered rice) is a rice dish similar to a vegetable pulao – but with pumped up flavours, nutrition and made using leftover cooked rice. It is a typical Gujarati dish and like all recipes – each family in Gujarat have their own special recipe of making the dish. It is a fairly balanced meal in that it has carbs, protein and some veggies – by adding some veggies, peanuts and playing around with your spice combinations – “voila” you have a tasty and nutritious rice dish.

The grandmothers in Gujarati homes always have remedies for every kind of ailment and illness – “vagharelo bhaat” is one of their remedies for symptoms of cold and flu – because it is always served warm (from pan to plate) it was thought to bring warmth and nourishment to those who have the sniffles. It is always served as a “one dish light meal”. It is a perfect dish for those cold rainy days – when you want everything warm and all in one bowl

Vagharelo Bhatt

25ml oil

8-10 curry leaves

5ml mustard seeds

1-2 dry red chillies (optional)

1-2 green chillies (optional)

375ml cooked basmati rice

75ml plain yoghurt

5ml mixture of cumin and coriander powder

2ml turmeric powder

2.5ml sugar

2.5ml salt

5ml lemon juice

3ml freshly grated ginger

20ml finely chopped coriander leaves for garnish


  • Heat oil in a large flat pan and add the curry leaves, mustard seeds and chillies – allow the mustard seeds to pop
  • Lower heat and add the rice mixing well to ensure that the rice is well coated with the mustard seeds and oil
  • Add the dry spices, sugar, salt, lemon juice and ginger to the yoghurt and mix well
  • Slowly add the yoghurt mixture to the rice and stir carefully, ensuring that the rice is well coated with the yoghurt and it the rice grains do not break
  • Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary
  • Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot as a snack


  • A choice of steamed vegetables can be added before the yoghurt is added
  • During the first step some roasted peanuts or cashew nuts can be added
  • Some chopped onions and tomatoes can also be added during the first step






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