In south Indian families, a girl who has three Ph.Ds and wins Wimbledon is considered useless unless she can cook a pot of rice perfectly. “Who will marry you?” the madisar mamis will ask, aghast.

Guys have equally exacting requirements. They are expected to know how to put coconut oil in their hair, burp, fart, and lick the yogurt rice off their elbows after exclaiming, “Good, but not as tasty as my mom’s.”

Both of us fell woefully short in these departments. Now, atleast we have the rice part right.

If you’re trying to snag a good south Indian bloke, print out this post, and you’re set. We’ll post the Burp and Fart Manual when we figure it out.

UPDATE: The Burp and Fart Manual is HERE.

We have more rices in our pantry than we can count. A sampler:

The default option in our home is Rose Matta Rice. Also called Kuthari, this is red parboiled rice from Kerala. We use it for practically every dish where rice is used. Especially good for idlis, kanji and payasam.

Modus operandi: Pressure cook 1 cup of rice with three cups of water for three whistles, or soak for 30 minutes, drain and cook on the stove top with 3 cups of water in a covered pan on medium heat for around 40-45 minutes.

White basmati is what we use when we have company, especially for flavoured rices like pulaos and biryanis.

Soak rice in plenty of water for 30 minutes. Drain.

Meanwhile, bring water to a boil. For 1 measure of rice, we use 1.75 measures of water.

Add 1/2 tsp oil/ghee to the water. If making a flavoured rice, we add salt, else we don’t.

Add the drained rice to the boiling water, on HIGH heat. After a couple of minutes, when it starts coming back to a boil again (small bubbles start appearing on the surface), stir once gently.

Cover the pot and reduce the heat to the lowest setting.

For 1 cup rice, cook for 10 minutes. For 2 cups, 17-18 minutes. Turn off the heat. Let it rest for 7-8 minutes.

Then fluff gently with a large fork. Brown basmati is cooked the same way.

Bhutanese Red Rice – our occasional indulgence.

Modus operandi: Pressure cook 1 cup of rice with 2.5 cups of water for two whistles, then simmer for a few more minutes. Or soak for 30 minutes, drain and cook on the stovetop with 2.5 cups water for 30-35 minutes.

Brown Rice: Long- or short-grain

Cooking technique similar to Bhutanese red rice for short-grain. For long-grain use 2 measures water for 1 cup of rice.

Preheat oven to 375F. Put rice in an oven-safe bowl with 2 tsps oil/butter. Pour 1.5 cups boiling water over rice and seal tight with foil or an oven-safe lid. Bake for an hour, let is sit for 10 minutes, fluff and serve.

Black rice (Forbidden rice)

Rinse 1 cup of rice quickly. Soak it for 1 hour in 2 cups of water. In the same water (it is mineral-rich), cook on the stovetop or pressure cook for 2 whistles and simmer for a few more minutes.

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  1. sia says:

    :laugh: :rofl:

  2. Eskay says:


  3. Kaykat says:

    The madisari brigade is coming to get you! :laugh:

  4. Mona says:

    Oh! It touched my heart when i read.. ‘Good!But not as good as my Mom’s !! :nono: :tongue: I have seen many men saying that, but never understood why?!?! They all should b tied up and beaten well :bruised: i think so.. :dance: :)

  5. Meeta says:

    You guys crack me up! Your rice selection looks very interesting!

  6. ss says:

    so funny

  7. Superchef says:

    that is soo tru about the madisar mamis!! :bow: only you guys can come up with these!!! :D

  8. cynic says:

    is it just me or does the comments section look messed up (like spilled rice)

  9. bhavani says:

    it must be just cynic, for the comments looks fine to me. maybe the madisaru mami is out to get cynic! :nono:

    we removed some spam bot comments that cynic was seeing… j

  10. Simona says:

    I am saving this for future reference: thanks for all the details and, as usual, love the photos.

  11. Namratha says:

    :laugh: Now that is an interesting variety of rices in your pantry, I go crazy with the 3 I have!!

  12. arundati says:

    havent been on the blogosphere for a while….cracked me up!! shall i add “again” ??

  13. Nirmala says:

    :laugh: Excellent! But I never fail to say “Good! but not as good as my father does” whenever I get a chance ;)

  14. lakshmi says:

    we reserve rice for the laziest of days when we don’t feel like cooking – for either thayir sadam or bisibelebaath.

    madisar maamis can go through a de addiction program for rice fanatics at the tata institute of social sciences dining hall.

  15. shankari says:

    :yes: :laugh: :rofl: :bow:

  16. rachel says:

    :D :rofl:

    Awaiting the manual!!

  17. Anjali says:

    ROFL. Lord save the SI girl if married to a NI. Roti to aati nahi, chawal bhi nahi? :notlisten

    I never understand the girl talk I overhear in the south how rice at the inlaws place was not cooked like Mom’s. Yes many of my colleagues cannot even boil rice and they say it with pride :rolleyes: I see most of DIls are well fed by MILs with fluffy rice yet this thing.

    I think irrespective of the gender all should know to cook to save their own life!

  18. rashmi says:

    Thats so so true…..people often ask do u know to coook?not where are u working or anything to do with once education? :fume:

    “Burp and Fart Manual ” :laugh: :rofl:

    i am really looking forward for that…..


  19. Suganya says:

    No Tamilian meal is complete without thayir sadham. Temperature in 100s and 90+% humidity will tell you why. Nice thing you put all cooking times in one page. Easy to refer.

  20. Manasi says:

    :rofl: THAT ‘B&F’ manual will be worth the wait!!

  21. Siri says:

    :rofl: :rofl: :secret: :secret:

  22. Elizabeth says:

    Hilarious. Just think how many rice-challenged ladies you have made into marriage material just by posting these instructions? South Indian gentleman, eat your hearts out.

  23. Srivalli says:

    :yes: ..waiting for the manual dear b&J..nobody can beat you guys on that perfection :tongue:

  24. Latha says:

    Guys have equally exacting requirements. They are required to know how to put coconut oil in their hair, burp, fart, and lick the yogurt rice off their elbows after exclaiming, “Good, but not as tasty as my mom’s.”


  25. Pauaprincess says:

    If you were to substitute bacon and egg pie for rice, you’d have my first experience cooking the Princes favorite dish. I used icing sugar instead of flour by mistake when I rolled the pastry. Can you imagine? I got the it’s good but not as good as Mum’s :( . Happily, since I got labels for all the containers full of white powder in my pantry, my bacon and egg pie has risen to hitherto unknown heights of taste. The Prince won’t eat his mothers now, because mine is better ;)

  26. Anonymous says:


  27. Maninas says:

    I’m starting to think the fart/burp requirments might be universal… :)

  28. Núria says:

    I’m addicted to rice… in any way, it’s one of my favourites ever! Thanks for the info on the cooking times and so. I only use the arboreo and bomba ones, different types but sooooo good too!
    The burp and fart manual could be a great hit!!!! :rofl: I’d sure have a good laugh!!!

  29. soumya says:

    “lick the yogurt rice off their elbows after exclaiming, “Good, but not as tasty as my mom’s.” :)
    Guys must be doing this all the time…
    The Burp and Fart manual will be worth a wait i guess :D
    Simply Amazing!!


  30. Angie says:

    Hey Good stuff!! Wht is the cooking time and water level reqd for basmati rice while using a pressure cooker?

    soak it for 15 minutes in water, then drain, add 1.75 cups water for 1 cup rice. pressure cook until it is just about to give the second whistle. if you don’t soak it, wait for two whistles and shut it off. open it after 5 minutes when the pressure subsides. don’t put the rice and water directly in the cooker. there’s won’t be enough water to generate steam for the whistles. put it in another pan in the cooker.

  31. Anonymous says:

    its excellent ideas and guide for a bachelors……..

  32. [...] For information on how to cook them, see How to Snag a South Indian Guy [...]

  33. Erika Meller says:

    I’ve attempted to contact you before, but am trying again, because we at The Nibble, an online Gourmet Food magazine ( would like permission to use the photo of your red Bhutanese rice in our Rice Glossary. If you would please be so kind as to respond either way, we would appreciate it.

  34. [...] Various ways to snag a good south Indian guy cook rice. [...]

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