Pulihora is a quintessential dish that is made on any festival in most of South Indian homes. Usually tamarind and lemon pulihora are very common in my household. I’ve tried pulihora with different ingredients like, gongura, cranberries and broccoli before.
I saw the recipe for Usirikaya/ gooseberry pulihora on a Telugu cooking show and thought this would be great to make for Ugadhi. I bought a bag of frozen gooseberries and used them to make this pulihora.
Original recipe used grated gooseberries to make the pulihora, when I tried to grate the frozen ones, it was a little difficult. So I just microwaved them, removed the seed and blend them to a paste. Gooseberries have unique taste — they are tart with mild bitter undertones, so I added a little bit of lemon juice to give the dish some more flavor instead of using too much gooseberries. Even my kids loved this dish. But if you like the taste of gooseberries, then go ahead and skip the lemon juice and add more gooseberry paste.
Usirikaya Pulihora (Tangy Gooseberry Rice)
- 1 cup Rice
- 6 Gooseberries - small (remove the seeds)
- ½ tsp Turmeric
- 1 ~ 2 tsp Lemon juice
- to taste Salt
- 2 tbsp Peanuts
- 1 tsp Chana Dal
- 1 tsp Urad dal
- 2 chilies Green - slit
- 8 ~ 10 Curry leaves
- 1 Ginger " - finely grated
- 2 red chili Dry
- ¼ tsp Asafoetida / hing
- Cook rice along with turmeric and 1tsp oil, making sure that the rice is not mushy and each grain is separate. Cool the rice.
- If using frozen gooseberries, then grind them into a smooth paste. If using fresh gooseberries then grate them.
- Heat 2tbsp oil (I used gingelly oil, but any oil will work here) in a pan; add peanuts, chana and urad dal, saute till the dals turn golden.
- Next add mustard seeds and when the seeds splutter, add red chilies and hing. Fry for 30 seconds.
- Next add curry leaves, ginger and the gooseberry paste. Cook for 5~6 minutes, stirring constantly, or until the mixture does not smell raw anymore.
- Add the mixture along with salt to cooled rice. Stir in the lemon juice. Mix well gently and rest for at least 10~15 minutes before serving.