Toast to the Coconut with Tomato Coconut Rice

Coconut has long been maligned as a non-healthy food,”full of saturated fat and a potential risk to the heart. Its bad for your cholestrol levels and other such.” The cuisine that I have been raised on, however,includes coconut in some form or the other in almost 90% of its recipes. And this is my everyday food!!! I take heart (no pun intended), in the fact that no one in my circle of family or friends has showed anymore likelihood of being afflicted by heart disease than ones who have avoided coconuts their whole life. And with that thought, I present to thee another reason to gorge on this magnificent piece of my culinary life, the coconut.


It takes all of 15 minutes to put together and the results are extremely good. The tanginess of the tomatoes is off-set by the sweetness of Coconut Milk, making for a delicious balance of flavors in every spoonful. Be sure to use fresh tomatoes and not the canned ones and definitely not concentrated pastes. It would, just not be the same.

2 1/2 cups basmati rice, washed and set aside for 30 mins
5 medium tomatoes,pureed
1 large onion,thinly sliced
1tbsp ginger+ garlic+green chilly paste,
cloves 2-3,
cinnamon stick 1/2″inch,
bay leaf 1 pc.
1 medium carrot,diced,
1/2 cup green peas
2 cups thick coconut milk + 3 cup water,mixed together
coconut oil, 4-5 tbsp

Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pan, ona medium to high flame.Add bay leaf & whole garam masala.Stir for 1 minute.Add onions, fry till pink and add the paste. Fry for 1-2 minutes. Sprinkle water, if required. Add the tomatoes ,fry on high till the paste leaves oil. Add the veggies except peas. fry for another minute and add the soaked rice. Mix well . Add the milk & water mixture. and let it come to a boil. Add peas and salt. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook on low flame till done (about 10 minutes). Transfer to serving bowl. If you wish to make it fancy or are serving this at a party, top with sliced tomatoes and coriander. Serve with mixed raita.


22 thoughts on “Toast to the Coconut with Tomato Coconut Rice

  1. This sounds and looks really delicious Vee…I like the colour play of the carrots on the pale orange-red rice with spots of green…from reading this and your last post, you seem as picky as I am about tomatoes…if I were asked what one food source I would prefer to have, if I had to be locked up somewhere, it would be them…perhaps rice would be a wiser choice, but paradise has plants and I am quite sure there are tomatoes among them. Ever grow your own?

  2. Amazing :). I loved your intro, even I beleive in what u say. In india, we say nonveg and alcohol are bad for health, but in many other countries, we see many people who take nonveg and alcohol almost everyday and still they are fine. So same way, I feel about coconut. I definitely don’t think if we leave coconut, we will not get heart disease, even a famous heart surgeon told us this. Here I am not saying we have to eat loads of cocout, but atleast be patient with others who want to eat it.

    The rice looks very tempting. I am going to try this soon.

  3. There are lots of studies now saying that coconut is good for you. The oils are easily absorbed by the body and it has a number of amino acids that are very healthful.

    I believe that whole unprocessed foods and moderation are always better for you than processed alternatives. I LOVE coconut and am happy to eat it at all times…

  4. Diane, most of the studies I have read (online), just talk about the oil. There is so much more to the coconut than just the oil. But, as far as I am concerned , Coconut Rules!!!.

    Coffee, thanks for tagging me, But Secrets????…Really??? uh…will be in my next post 🙂

    Shilpa, you are absolutely right. Moderation is the key to all things, I think.

    Sandeepa, give coconut oil a chance. Here’s some incentive

    Pelicano, Tomatoes have to be just so , otherwise they are just not the same. Haven’t tried growing my own, though. Plan to give it a try this summer. What about you?? Have you? Come on, come on, talk to me, sista!!!

  5. Hello

    The Mirchi ka salan recipe is wonderful, but I had a question- when I try to deep/shallow fry the mirchi splutters all over and its scary to turn them over their sides out of fear of having hot oil splashed over the face. Am I doing something wrong or does this happen to everyone?

    Other than that, love the recipe and is a keeper!


  6. Hi vee,Hey thats an interesting combination of tomato and coconut! The rice looks good in the plate. The flavour must be tangy and sweetish at the same time! As you say, this would also take very little time. Thanks for the recipe.

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