Fried Tomato and Onion Rice

I call this the South Indian risotto. It has the same comfort and warmth to it. On a cold day, this is one of my favorite things that I look forward to.


1 cup basmati rice (I used brown basmati rice)
2 tbsps canola oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp asafoetida powder
8 indian green chillies, split into two lengthwise
1″ piece ginger, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 large onions, diced
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
3 tomatoes, diced
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1 1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped

Bring 2 1/2 cups of water to a boil over high heat. Add the cup of rice, cover and let simmer over medium heat for 35-40 minutes until all the water is absorbed and the rice is cooked. Remove from heat and let cool. If using white basmati rice, follow the same procedure, just use 1 1/2 cups water per cup of rice and simmer for 20-22 minutes to cook completely.


Heat oil a non-stick pan over medium-high heat. Add the mustard seeds and asafoetida. As soon as they start spluttering add garlic, ginger and green chillies.

Fry for a minute, add the onions and turmeric powder.


When the onions start turning golden brown, add the tomatoes, salt and coriander powder.

Mix well, cover and cook over medium heat for 8-10 minutes.

Uncover, add the cilantro and stir together.


At this stage, this makes a great side dish on its own, served with chapati or naan.


Add this tomato-onion mixture to the cooked rice, mix well together and serve warm.



  1. Hey Supriya, this brings back memories of mom’s tomato rice. This will also take a half tsp of sambar powder and a half of garam masala.
    I have been on this blog since I discovered it a couple days ago. I’m loving everything. There are so many ‘hey why didn’t I think of that’ recipes. I’m definitely going to try some.


    1. Hey Lakshmi, Thanks!
      Sambar powder would be great. It’s a bit complicated to explain sambar powder here. If I just say sambar powder, people wouldn’t know what it is or where to find it. So, I first want to post the recipe for the powder, why its called sambar powder and then start using it as an ingredient! Phew I have a long way to go.
      Thanks for your comment and ideas.


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