Sweet and Spicy Rice

Visit the Indian Food Glossary for information on the ingredients in this recipe
Sweet and Spicy Rice

Hot and simple … two of my favorite words to describe food. This fast and easy-to-make rice packs a fiery bite on top of a welcoming sweetness, and is delicious served steaming hot. Slightly adapted from Raghavan Iyer's 660 Curries — a book I'm finding increasingly indispensable — sweet and spicy rice makes a wonderful contrast with more earthy legume or vegetable curries such as chopped cabbage with a crumbly chana dal sauce.

Sweet and Spicy RiceSweet and Spicy Rice
Recipe by
Adapted from 660 Curries
Cuisine: Indian
Published on March 28, 2009

Quick and easy white basmati rice with fiery dried red chilies and a soothing brown sugar sweetness — a perfect simple side for Indian meals

Preparation: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes

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  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 6 dried whole red chilies
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • Rinse the rice well in a fine strainer. Transfer to bowl, cover with water, swish it around a few times, drain and repeat until the water is relatively clear and no longer cloudy. Drain once more, cover with water, and soak the rice for about 20 minutes or longer. Drain and set aside to air dry for 15 minutes or so.

  • Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. When hot, toss in the mustard seeds, cover, and cook until the seeds have stopped popping, about 30 seconds. Add the onions and chilies and stir until the onions are well browned, about 10 minutes. Now add the rice and stir to coat the grains with oil. Pour in 1 2/3 cups cold water and stir in the sugar. Raise the heat and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 12 minutes or until the water has been absorbed.

  • Remove from heat, fold in the salt, and discard the chilies. Serve hot.

Makes 4 servings

If you liked this recipe you may also enjoy:
Green Tea & Curry Rice
Spiced Urad Dal Rice
Methi Rice
Spicy Fried Rice


Trupti said...

Lisa, Rice looks mouthwatering

vanillasugarblog said...

exactly my kind of rice. love this!

Jacqueline Meldrum said...

What a very tasty way of spicing up rice.

Soma said...

That's a very different combination! I would like that. I like a teensy bit sweet in my food...sometimes:-)

Jamie said...

All your rice recipes look fabulous! I am glad you posted this recipe as I am looking for delicious rices to serve with the Indian food I make and love!

Ivy said...

Spicy and sweet. I love this combination.

A_and_N said...

Hey Lisa, I wanted to tell you that you could use dry methi leaves for the theplas :)

Darius T. Williams said...

I'm loving this rice - it looks fantastic. AND, I gotta say - I have a sweet heat roasted chicken that would be PERFECT for this rice.