It’s a family affair in New Orleans, where the Vilkhu family, owners of Saffron Nola, invited Dan Buettner to a dinner of traditional northern and southern Indian cuisine.
Saffron Nola is a Vilkhu family business that incorporates local New Orleans ingredients and flavors into traditional Indian cuisine. It received a James Beard nomination for Best New Restaurant in 2018.
Total Cook Time: 1 hour + 16 hours soaking and resting | Serves 4
Source: The Blue Zones American Kitchen, Photo: David McLain
1 ½ cups basmati rice
½ cup urad dal
2 tablespoons chana dal (split chickpea lentils)
½ teaspoon fenugreek seeds
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon oil
½ cup diced onion
½ cup diced tomatoes
½ cup chopped cilantro
1 or 2 green chilis (such as jalapeños), chopped
Coconut chutney, for serving
Note: For faster fermenting, you can use the yogurt setting on an Instant Pot. Add the batter to the Instant Pot and cover loosely—do not seal the top—and set it on the yogurt preset for 8 hours. You can refrigerate the fermented batter for 2 or 3 days. Bring it to room temperature before cooking.