Nimmakaya pulihora (South Indian lemon rice)

    15 min

    Lemon rice is a South Indian favourite and a delicious change from the norm. Feel free to serve it with plain yogurt. You can also add 1 teaspoon sugar for a sweet-salty taste.

    1 person made this

    Serves: 4 

    • 4 tablespoons oil
    • 75g peanuts
    • 2 tablespoons split Bengal gram (chana dal)
    • 3 tablespoons skinned split black lentils (urad dal)
    • 3 dried red chillies or crushed chillies to taste
    • 30g raw cashews (optional)
    • 1 tablespoon mustard seed
    • 2 sprigs fresh curry leaves
    • 5 green chillies, halved lengthways
    • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
    • 2 lemons, juiced
    • salt to taste
    • 315g cold, cooked basmati rice

    Prep:5min  ›  Cook:10min  ›  Ready in:15min 

    1. Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Add in order, the peanuts, chana dal, urad dal, red chillies, cashews, mustard seed, curry leaves, green chillies and turmeric to the hot oil in 30 second intervals, allowing each item to cook briefly before adding the next. Stir the lemon juice and salt into the mixture. Mix the rice into the mixture, breaking up the individual grains with a wooden spoon; cook and stir until no clumps of rice remain and the mixture is thoroughly heated. Serve hot.

    Difficult ingredients

    Split Bengal gram (chana dal), skinned split black lentils (urad dal) and fresh curry leaves can be found in Indian/South Asian stores.

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    Reviews in English (1)


    This is a delicious rice recipe, but in my opinion, it needs less turmeric. With 2 teaspoons turmeric the rice turned out more turmeric than lemon. And the rice turned out a little dry for our taste. I used only 3 green peppers and it was enough. And I didn't use cashews. With some modifications it will be a very good recipe. Absolutely easy to make.  -  25 Feb 2012  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)