Cook's Hideout: Coconut Rice

August 09, 2009

Coconut Rice

Before leaving to India I realized I still had some veggies and these 2 coconuts that need to be used up. So I asked my DH to break the coconuts for me, so I can freeze some of it and make this rice dish with the rest of it. We followed Alton's Brown's method of drilling into the eyes and removing the water and then baking the coconut in a 375degree oven to break the shell. It worked pretty well. Here are some pics of my DH.

This recipe is from Chandhra Padmanabhan's Dakshin: Vegetarian Cuisine From South India and we really enjoyed the final dish.
I never had decent coconut rice in my whole life; I don’t remember my mom making this dish at home and the ones in the restaurants are always below par (I’m not even sure if they use real fresh coconut). Well anyway, I found my favorite coconut rice recipe and I’m going to be making this more often now. To go with the saada (plain) coconut rice and to use up my huge onions, I made this onion+veggie curry.

Recipe adapted from Dakshin: Vegetarian Cuisine From South India
Rice (Sona masoori rice is preferred)– 2 cups
Fresh grated coconut – 1½ cups (from about ½ a coconut)
Sesame seeds – 2 tbsp (optional, but highly recommended by me :-D)
Cashews – 3tbsp
Green chilies – 2-3
Curry leaves – 6-10
Mustard seeds – 1tsp
Cumin seeds – 1tsp
Urad dal – 1tsp
Chana dal – 1tsp
Dry red Chili – 2
Hing – ½tsp

  • Cook rice and set aside to cool.
  • Dry roast sesame seeds and grind to powder.
  • Heat 1tbsp ghee, add cashews and sauté till lightly browned. Remove and keep aside.
  • Heat 1tbsp ghee; add grated coconut and sauté till reddish brown. Keep aside.
  • In the same pan, add 2tsp oil, add urad dal, chana dal, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, red chili and hing. Once the seeds start to splutter add the green chilies and curry leaves.
  • Add the rice, sesame powder, salt and coconut to the tadka. Turn off heat and mix well. Serve hot.


  1. Yummy looking rice Pavani :) I love the first two pics :D


  2. Wow what a perfect way to break this coconut...the rice looks so yummy..just made some soup from coconut milk..

  3. Very cool way to get the water out! I use frozen or dessicated coconut here but there's nothing like a fresh one, right? Rice looks great! As does the curry in the picture :)

  4. Rice looks very tempting. I luv cocnut rice, its one of my fav. Very cool way to break a coconut.

  5. Wow thats such a perfect way to break a coconut, rice looks delectable! luv that curry too :)

  6. Rice looks yum..and I love that the colour remains white..also your banana bread is so eye catching..tempting me a lot

  7. Never thought of taking out the coconut water like this, very prefect idea..Coconut rice with papads my all time fav, rice looks great!

  8. I do so want to make this.. sadly, the hubby hates coconut.. but i will try for myself.
    My only issue is the entire coconut is too much to finish off for 1 person and i dislike frozen coconut! Sigh!
    But ur post is so tempting!!!!!!!!

  9. Looks good, must be awesome with fresh coconut!

  10. Hi
    please accept an award from my blog.

  11. coconut rice looks perfect and inviting pavani.
    Check out my blog sometime

  12. One of my favorites...looks delicious..:)

  13. pls collect some awards from my blog Pavani..

  14. Great way to break the coconuts.Rice looks lovely!

  15. I didn't see that Alton Brown episode but those are great tips, Pavani! I don't usually buy the fresh coconut because it seems like just too much work, but now I gotta try it. Love the coconut rice!

  16. Coconut rice is one of my favourites too. I had read that method of breaking coconuts but somehow I am so used to just one 'hit' that I couldn't do this one:)

  17. My Name is Pavani too...what a conincedence. That's a really cool way of taking coconut. I remember the first days when i came to US, i had done a pooja and i struggled so hard to break coconut...we cannot break coconut on the floor as in India, the whole building may collapse (just kidding).
    Your rice looks yumooo..


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