CURD RICE - Tempered Yoghurt Rice

Curd rice is a great summer food. It is served in South Indian temples to devotees, packed in lunch boxes and is so loved that it finds its way to banquets.

This dish is very easy to make provided you have the main ingredient – the curd.  If you would like the authentic taste here’s a simple recipe to make it.  However, the curd is difficult to make - depends on room temperature - so please substitute yoghurt for a quick dish.

Making the Curd

Traditionally 1 tablespoon of curd is used to make a new batch but if you do not have any here’s how you make the starter.

( Serves 4)

  • Heat 100ml milk (about ½ cup) to 80°C degrees
  • Pour into a glass bowl.
  • Allow to cool to 40°C
  • Now add 2 tsp lemon juice
  • Mix, cover and place in your microwave/oven
  • Your starter curd will be ready in 8 hours (best done before going to bed).

To make a batch of curd for the Curd Rice recipe:

  • Warm 1 litre full cream milk to 80°C degrees
  • Allow to cool to 40°C
  • Smear a glass/earthenware bowl with 2 tbsp of the curd starter (bring to room temperature if you have stored it in the fridge)
  • Now pour in the warm milk and mix gently
  • Cover with a lid then place in a microwave/oven
  • Your curd will be set firm in 4 hours to 5 hours (depending on how warm it is)

The rice

  • Cook your rice in the absorption method style but the ratio of rice to water is different from when you want it grainy. Use 1cup raw rice to 3 cups water.
  • When the rice is cool empty into a serving dish.
  • Now add 2 tsps salt, 1 finely chopped green chilli, ½ tbsp chopped coriander leaves and 3 cups of curd.

The seasoning (tadka) - have your ingredients ready before you start.

  • In a small frying pan heat 1tbsp ghee then add ½ tsp mustard seed, ½ tsp cumin seed, 2 dried red chillies and 1 tbsp Urad dhal (this is for crunch and can be substituted with peanuts instead). When the dhal starts to turn golden turn off the flame. Now stir in 2 tsps grated ginger, 1 tsp asafoetida and 8 curry leaves.
  • When the tadka stops bubbling pour it over the rice.


Serve with a simple lemon pickle or papadum.

     Curd Rice