From Congee To Panta Bhat, Chef Ranveer Brar Explores The Versatility Of Leftover Rice In India

Rxplore the diverse ways rice enriches culinary traditions and nourishes both body and soul.

by Mallika Khurana
From Congee To Panta Bhat, Chef Ranveer Brar Explores The Versatility Of Leftover Rice In India

Rice holds an indelible place in Indian cuisine, transcending regional boundaries and cultural differences. From the northern plains to the southern coast, rice serves as the backbone of countless traditional dishes, providing sustenance, comfort, and flavour to millions of households. In a culinary landscape often dominated by trends and innovations, celebrity chef Ranveer Brar recently took to Instagram to remind us of the enduring significance of rice in Indian culinary traditions. He explored the diverse ways in which rice manifests itself in Indian kitchens.

Chef Ranveer Brar Digs Deep Into Indian Comfort With Leftover Rice


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A post shared by Ranveer Brar (@ranveer.brar)

In a world captivated by extravagant culinary trends and elaborate presentations, Chef Ranveer reminds us how the essence of comfort food lies not in complexity, but in simplicity. He reminisces about the timeless allure of quintessential Indian comfort foods like Dal-Rajma-Chawal, Sambaar-Rasam-Rice, Khichdi, and Curd Rice, which continue to hold sway over our palates. These dishes, adorned with humble ingredients and prepared with love, evoke memories of home and warmth.

But what makes these dishes truly remarkable is their versatility, extending beyond freshly cooked rice to encompass their leftover remnants. Chef Ranveer Brar sheds light on the ingenious ways in which leftover rice finds new life in Indian kitchens. Leftover rice can be used to make tasty Vadi or added to nourishing gruels like Kanji or Congee. This is just one example of how inventive Indian cooking is.

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Tradition, Versatility, And Nutrition Of Leftover Rice

panta bhat
Photo Credits: Canva

Chef Ranveer Brar also gave us an insight into the historical roots of Congee. He traced its origins to the ancient Zhou dynasty while highlighting its etymological connections to the Tamil word ‘Kanji’ and its variants in other South Indian languages. He describes the transformation of leftover rice overnight into filling breakfast staples like this South Indian treat combined with buttermilk and topped with aromatic spices.

Furthermore, he reminded us of the regional diversity of rice-based dishes, from the East Indian delight Panta Bhat to the medicinal gruels of Kerala like Karkidaka Kanji and Nombu Kanji. Chef Ranveer Brar also explored the nutritional benefits of rice soaked overnight, which enhances its micronutrient content and fosters the growth of beneficial gut bacteria. In an era where the pursuit of health-conscious diets often overlooks traditional wisdom, he celebrates the timeless wisdom embedded in Indian culinary classics.

His Instagram post certainly serves as a poignant ode to the enduring legacy of rice in Indian cuisine. As we savour each bite of our favourite rice-based dishes, we are reminded of the timeless connection between food, culture, and community.

Cover Image Courtesy: Chef Ranveer Brar/Instagram

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