SunstarTV Bureau: The typical summer-time odia cookery watered rice also known as pakhala. This healthy and tasty fermented rice not only keeps you cool in summer but is great for your digestive system.
The term “pakhala” is derived from pali word “pakhaliba” as well as Sanskrit word “prakshalana” which means “washed/to wash”. Traditionally the dish is prepared with rice that is cooked and allowed to cool down then by keeping leftover rice in an earthen pot.and pour water into it and add small amount of squeezed lemon to the bowl. After 7-8 hours, the rice ferments and turns into Pakhala.
The dish can be tried in various ways by adding a variety flavours to it. Below are some seasoned pakhalas that you may try out:
Saja Pakhala – The the fresh Pakhal prepared by adding water to freshly cooked rice with drops of lemon in to it . This dish is preferred the most as it is not fermentated and doesn’t induce sleep either.
Dahi Pakhala – As the name suggests, beaten curd is added to cooked rice along with some water for a refreshing and healthy meal.
Basi pakhala – This is the basic Pakhala which follows the traditional method of preparation. To enhance the taste of the seasoning people often refer to take it with Badi-chura, which is prepared from rice and urad dal. Chopped onions and lemon add flavours to this dish and is a perfect side-dish with Pakhala.
Sugandhi Pakhala– Chopped/grated ginger and roasted cumin seeds are added to cooked rice submerged in water with an addition of salt according to taste. This gives an irresistible aroma to the flavoured Pakhala.
Chupuda (squeezed) Pakhala– As the name suggests cooked rice washed in water, then is squeezed out. It is then served with curd, roasted cumin and a pinch of salt added and seasoned with grated ginger.
Mitha Pakhala– An unusual and unpopular variant, Mitha Pakhala is sweet. A unique dish by adding oranges to cooked rice and water along with roasted cumin.