Kaha bath, directly translated as Yellow Rice is a quick and easy way to elevate the usual steamed rice into something more extravagant with the addition of just a few everyday ingredients from the pantry. Growing up, kaha bath used to make an appearance in our home almost every Wednesday and was something I always used to look forward to. It is also a dish that would take the centre stage at any Sri Lankan rice and curry meal catered for a special occasion. In most homes I know, yellow rice is often paired with a creamy potato white curry or a cashew curry, Sri Lankan chicken curry, brinjal moju , cutlets and salad; this combination never fails to tickle my taste buds – specially when living away from home.
So today to celebrate my new blog post after a long hiatus, I have decided to share this delicious recipe; which if made correctly is really good enough to go by itself as well.
Cast of characters: (Serves 2)
- 1.5 cups of samba or basmati rice (I used samba which I got from my recent trip to Lanka)
- 2 cups of water
- A knob of butter
- One medium onion – sliced
- A two inch piece of pandan leaf (Rampe)
- A few pods of cardamom & cloves
- Turmeric and salt
- A stock cube (optional)
- A splash of thick coconut milk
- Deep fried curry leaves and roasted cashews for garnishing
Add the knob of butter into a hot heavy bottomed pan and immediately add in the onions and the pandan leaf. Stir till the onions become slightly translucent. Apart from giving a yummy flavour, the butter would ensure that each rice grain would stay separated while cooking and remain fluffy without getting mushy.
Next stir in the a teaspoon of turmeric powder, the cloves and the cardamom and a stock cube and mix well. While the turmeric powder gives the ‘yellowness’ into the kahabath the spices and the stock cube would impart a delicious aroma and flavour.
However, if you are not a fan of using stock cubes, feel free to substitute with just salt.
Once the turmeric is incorporated, add in the washed and drained rice and give it a good stir so that each grain is well coated with the buttery mixture.
Then add in a splash (about two table spoons) of coconut milk for the extra Sri Lankan flavour.
Lastly transfer everything into the rice cooker along with two cups of water and cook till done. Once it’s cooked through, give the rice a quick stir with a fork to fluff it up.
You could deep fry a few sprigs of curry leaves and cashew nuts for the extra texture and garnishing.