Indian Gooseberry (Amla) Rice (Nellikai Chitranna)

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I got this recipe from my mother who had seen this on a Kannada TV program in Bangalore. Gooseberry are called as Nellikayi in Kannada.

Indian Gooseberry is known to be a robust source of Vitamin C. Due to its strong, cooling and laxative properties it has been widely used in hemorrhage, diarrhea and dysentery. It also prevents infection due to the antibacterial and astringent attributes present in it. It has been widely used for treatment of leucorrhea and atherosclerosis. In India, consuming gooseberry is considered the best antidote against aging-related disorders. (Source)

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I found these gooseberries in the frozen section of the Indian grocery here in the US. Even though these are light green in color, the frozen ones that I bought had pale white color. Maybe because of the way they were frozen (freeze-burn), they lost their color and turned into that pale color.

It takes a bit time to get used to the taste of the gooseberry. It has an intense sour and tangy in the beginning and gradually toward the end turns sweetish in taste. So if you are using this for the first time, please use caution and start with small quantity. Also do not forget to remove the pit from the gooseberry before grinding.


  • 1 cup rice 
  •  ¼ cup shredded coconut (frozen/fresh)
  •  3-4 gooseberries (pitted)
  • 2-3 green chillies
  • ½ cup onion chopped
  •   ½ cup raw peanuts (optional)
  • 2 tsp Urad daal
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • Turmeric a pinch
  • ½ cup chopped coriander leaves
  • Asafetida a pinch
  • Salt
  • oil

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  • Cook the rice separately in the pressure cooker and keep aside.
  • Grind the coconut, gooseberry (remove the pits), green chillies and salt by adding very little water.
  • Meanwhile, take a heavy bottom pan, heat it and add 3 tsp of oil. Add mustard seeds, asafetida, and peanuts (if using), urad daal and mix until the peanuts turn crisp. ( Do this on low flame else the peanuts will burn fast)
  • Add the chopped onion and mix until it turns transparent. Now add the ground paste and stir for about a minute until the mixture turns light brown.
  • Add turmeric powder, rice, salt and mix well. Check taste and adjust seasonings as required.
  • Garnish with chopped coriander leaves.



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