Milk Rice (Kiribath) – A Sri Lankan Tradition

Happy 2016 to all my readers! I know it is late as January already draws to a close, but we do say “better late than never “. I have been quite a lazy writer this month, and this is my first post for the month as well as 2016. I promise to do better from next month onwards!!

Milk Rice or Kiribath as it is called in Sri Lanka , is made for all celebratory ,or what we call auspicious , occasions without fail , and in many houses it is the first meal cooked on the first day of January. This tradition is kept by many of us expats, and it is believed that the tradition brings Good Luck all around the year.

Although the origins of the Kiribath is not clear , it has been around for a long time as it is mentioned that Sujata offered milk rice to Gautama Buddha whilst he was meditating under a Banyan Tree , just before attaining Enlightment.

In Sri Lanka Kiribath is a dish held in high esteem by all communities alike and regardless of being rich or poor , it is made in all houses at every auspicious time and it something that all of us look forward to eating.

The recipe or process of making Kiribath is rather simple and requires few basic ingredients of rice, milk (Coconut milk or normal everyday use milk) and a pinch of salt. It can be made on the stove top using a pot or even using a rice cooker.

I will share with you a video done by the Bestie on how to make Kiribath on the stovetop. When I made mine, I used coconut milk instead of normal milk, as I prefer the rich and more traditional flavours. In Sri Lanka we make a lunumiris (a mixture of red onions and spices) to accompany the Kiribath, but it is such a versatile dish that can be accompanied by curries, or if you have a sweet tooth, with Jaggery or even with a banana. I had mine with some quick microwave made chilli paste.

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A Spinach & Chickpea Dinner

When I started this blog, I did write on the “About Me “page, that I like to read food blogs. And sometimes I actually do cook food that catch my fancy off those food blogs.

One such blog that I have continuously been reading for the last couple of years is Budget Bytes. I have tried out a number of her recipes, before I started writing, and they all turned out perfect.

So it was where I ended up last night, whilst looking for an easy one pot recipe that had Spinach on it. Why Spinach? Only because lately I have been neglecting my greens and had some frozen Spinach in the freezer. The recipe also called for chickpea and fetta, two of my favourite ingredients.

The only change I made was to season my dish with cracked pepper before I ate, because these days I have a craving for a peppery taste.

A spinach and chickpea rice pilaf

Its Curry Time

Every once in a while , my tastebuds make a straight run for home , to an island cuisine filled with aromatic spices , lots of chillies , coconut , and various types of curries. So for most of the week gone by I was craving a typical Sri Lankan curry , and decided to make canned mackerel curry for dinner tonight. I had picked up a packet of frozen parathas at the shops on Saturday , so it would be a curry and paratha meal. Since I have a bad memory for recipes , I referred to a video done by the Bestie on how to make canned mackerel curry , quick and easy .

As you can see , my efforts worked out quite well , and the tastebuds are now satisfied, at least until the next time they get a curry craving .

Comfort Food : Mac & Cheese

Saturday was a busy day , filled with lots of walking since it was Open House weekend in Perth and I went sightseeing . I also managed to sneak in some shopping at the same time , so after making all those tough decisions about what to buy and what not to buy , I was craving some comfort food for dinner. Having recently watched a rerun of MacGyver , my head was filled with various images of Mac & Cheese , and , yes , I have no clue as to why my brain associated those two together. Normally I would rely on the instant boxed varieties when making Mac & Cheese , but the Bestie recently did a video on  How to make No Fail Mac & Cheese , and the words ” No fail ” immediately drew me to it. As you can see below , it turned out alright , even though the photos don’t do it justice , and I would have taken some more photos later on , alas there was none left , as Someone decided to have a midnight snack.

Here’s to MacGyver and Mac & Cheese !

Sinful Fried Rice

Coming from an Asian household, my mother expected me to learn to cook at a very young age. Unfortunately for her, she could never coax me into the kitchen willingly, although I did love going shopping for Aprons. When I moved Down Under in early 2008 this was a major dilemma that I faced, and my admiration for who ever invented two minute noodles increased day by day. However early last year , the latent MasterChef in me awoke , all because someone requested chicken soup , request being the polite word here , the actual word would be “ challenge “ . I discovered a hidden talent in myself, the ability to cook and bake yummy treats. My mom says it’s an inheritance from my maternal grandfather who passed away before I was born and I say “Thank you, Grandpa “.

So through my cooking journey so far, I have searched high and low for the best and easiest fried rice recipe and this is one of the tastiest I’ve come across. Neither the recipe nor the video are mine, but done by Aasai Rasai, which happens to be a creation of the Bestie. The recipe uses basic ingredients, including frozen veggies, which in my personal opinion is a gift from the God of Convenience to all us busy corporate chicks. Also Fried Rice is a one pot wonder and is a premium choice of comfort food for me. There is nothing like enjoying a bowl of Fried Rice whilst watching a chick flick on a Friday Night. So when the Bestie did a cooking video on fried rice I could not wait to try it out. I have included a link to the video  for those who want to give it a go. Just a word of caution , this fried rice is addictive and you will be wanting more and more.

Happy Cooking Peeps !!

P:S  > I garnished mine with fried shallots ….