TOMATO RICE S/W SABUDANA PAPAD (Tomato Rice S/W Tapioca Pearls Papadums)

The past few months seem to have gone by in a haze, I feel as if I had lost all track of that particular phase of time. Some months left me low and others went in a dilemma. At times there was a sort of tussle between what my heart felt and what my mind thought; a turmoil which wrung my mind and heart so badly that I couldn’t think of ways to fix things and how to turn all the wrongs into rights. Then came a point, when I believed that it was the utmost point of things going wrong and they couldn’t go worse any further. The feeling left me almost numb and paralyzed my capacity to think. Perhaps that is what hitting rock bottom means.


It has often happened with me, that whenever I am at my lowest, I either come across a mail or receive a text message from a friend or just happen to hear something on the TV/radio which seems like an apt answer to that particular issue that has been haunting me or it addresses that particular emotion so well that it invariably leaves me filled with faith and uplifts my spirit. It is as if some power up there is connecting with me and holding me together.
The calm and peace that descends upon me is perhaps inexpressible. I then know that God is around, He is there – with me, for me – and my faith is reposed and further strengthened. Armed with faith, I know there is nothing to fear, nothing to worry and this confidence has always helped me fight through each of my personal trials and tribulations. Rest I leave to Him. I received an SMS that read – “when going through tough times, don’t say ‘God, why me’…instead, say ‘God, try me’!” It wasn’t difficult for me to grasp the meaning of these simple words. He never tries us beyond our capacities.



Hitting the kitchen is what I always do when I am going through such phases. It helps me calm down, unwind and I find it very therapeuticalmost cathartic. I often plunge myself into making stuff that is somewhat elaborate by my normal standard (I normally believe in finding ways/cooking stuff that is easy and fast to dish out) – measuring, stirring, simmering, cooling, spreading, turning over. I thoroughly enjoyed carrying out each one of this activity while making the papads, known popularly as poppadums or papadums to the West. These papads turn out crisp and delicious; you can enjoy them as an evening snack or serve it with curries and rice.
Making these papads also brought back some sweet memories of childhood. I can vividly recall Mom stirring the pot in the kitchen and me excitedly waiting for her to bring the pot out in the sun to spread them out for drying. Although we used to make them during summers (since they would dry faster), yet the blistering heat could never deter me from venturing out with Mom and making these fun goodies! J
As for the Tomato Rice, it was the outcome of some left-over cooked rice. This is a south Indian recipe though not a typical one. It does not have the omni-present curry leaves of the south Indian cuisine but fragrant never the less. Low in calories, rich in lycopene, potassium and Vit C, tomatoes have much more health benefiting qualities than that in an apple! With so many health benefiting qualities, it does not come as a surprise that Tomato Rice happens to be a popular dish served out at most wellness and healing centres in India.
Here is what I used to make the Tomato Rice:
2 cups cooked rice
1 medium onion (finely chopped)
2-3 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
¼ tsp ginger (finely chopped)
½ tsp anise seeds or fennel seeds 
¼ tsp mustard seeds
3-4 green cardamom
1 inch cinnamon
2-3 cloves
1 ½ tbsp Oil
3-4 medium, plump red tomatoes (finely chopped)
Salt and red chillies to taste (I used ¼ tsp chilli powder)


Heat the oil in a wok and add the mustard seeds, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves and anise seeds. 
When the mustard seeds start crackling and the anise seeds start to change colour, add the onion, garlic and ginger. 
Sauté till the onions just start turning golden.
Add the tomatoes and cook them on low flame for about 15-20 minutes. 
Season with salt and chillies and stir in the rice. 
Cook for approx. two minutes and serve with papad.
Note: I usually grate half the amount of tomatoes that I use and finely chop the rest. This cuts down on the cooking time.
For the Papad you would need: 
½ cup tapioca pearls
3 cups water
½  tsp cumin seeds (more if desired)
Salt to taste
1 generous pinch Chilli powder (optional)
1 generous pinch Garam Masala (optional)
Transfer the tapioca pearls in a pot and add salt. Soak them in water for 45 minutes to one hour. 
Place the pot on medium flame. Once the water starts to boil, reduce the heat to low and keep stirring. 
Cook till the mixture turns somewhat thick and viscous (not too thick) and the tapioca pearls will become almost translucent (it will take approximately 30-35 minutes)
Let the mixture cool down a little and then start spreading the mixture to dry. 
Scoop half a table spoon over a plastic sheet or a white sheet and gently spread (not too thick or thin) them at a little distance and finish the whole mixture. 
Lay them in the sun and once the top starts setting, cover them with a thin cloth to prevent dust. 
Once the top is dry, turn over the papads so the other side is dried out as well. 
Once dry, store in an air tight container. 
Notes: If using a cloth the papad will tend to stick to the cloth and may not come off easily; remove them by slightly moistening the back of the cloth by dabbing water and gently remove the papad. 
Notes: The tapioca pearls should be well cooked, else you will have chewy papads. (My first time was a fiasco!)
Note: Fry the dried papads in hot oil carefully since they tend to splutter oil once in a while (mine did). For this reason, I fry one at a time.
Note: The papads will double in size upon frying so carefully chose the size when you spread them to dry.
Makes about 25 papads (size shown in pics) 
Thanks for visiting and see you again!

Post linked to Nancy’s YBR – March event


69 thoughts on “TOMATO RICE S/W SABUDANA PAPAD (Tomato Rice S/W Tapioca Pearls Papadums)

  1. I’ve never done tapioka myself, but love it. I shell give it a try: your description is very detailed. I love the notes. Thanks!

  2. I’ve never tried pappads from scratch, nice work, tomato rice and pappads, yummy combo, I think everybody goes through those moments sometime and something happens and pulls u out of it..

  3. Turmoils r part of life and won’t be there for long. Whatever happens, happens for a reason. Cheer up girlie, u have made a fab lunch for today…Will try the pappads soon..

  4. Its great to know you have pulled urself out & back to something which is comforting.. a simple slogan which i personally believe.. is ” This too will pass” it bad times or good times :).. So your know its going to be better again :).. tomato rice & madam looks very nice 🙂

    Ongoing Event : I’m The Star

  5. We all have ups and downs, but overcoming the downs can be difficult. Cooking can make for some wonderful therapy!
    The tapioca pearls in pappadum is a very creative move, but no doubt it amps up the flavor. Also, the tomato rice was executed perfectly-very enticing.

  6. Life is full of bad moments and periods. My mother says to me that life has more unpleasant moments than pleasant and we have to be strong to endure them! Cooking is a very good therapy for the mind and soul. I do it myself. The pappadums look very cute and the rice looks very elegant and well cooked!

  7. Wow, this tomato rice looks delicious! I have never tried tomato rice before but will now. I love that you have added fennel seeds to it. Fennel gives a lovely flavor. I really like the plating too especially with the green chillies on the side. Perfect meal.

  8. Both of these recipe look wonderful, but I’m particularly intrigued by the Papad. I’ve never seen anything like it. Not only do I love the ingredients but the method to make them is quite interesting. It’s like dehydrating but then it’s not. Gotta try them! Great post!

  9. Hey, I love Pampadum & this looks so different. Is this is own creation? How clever? I could easily finish these in no time. Hahaha!

  10. My kitchen is often my sanctuary, too…and a great place to clear my head and give me perspective. I hope whatever has been troubling you eases soon and that you find peace in your heart and head. It certainly looks like you’ve worked it out in the kitchen. The rice is just beautiful and I can see it as a perfect side dish to many things. And the papad is such a unique recipe to me….but would love to try it!

  11. I made tomato rice today too. And yes, there are days when nothing seems right,and it is good that cooking relieves the stress for you. Hope you are over with the blues. The pictures here are so good.

  12. Just over 1 week ago I had a very powerful reminder that I am not alone in this journey. I’d like to think those little encouragements and bumps of positivity are given as a way to let us know we are not alone and we are on the right path. Perhaps I am wrong.

    The rice and papadums (papad?) look and sound delicious and I would love to expand my culinary adventures!

  13. aw, i hope ur outa the low phase & cheerful again.. it happens to all of us just keep ur spirits high and ul find the tough times dissapearing soon 🙂 i have never made sabudana pappad, had no idea it was as easy as this!

  14. The rice looks very flavourful, Taruna. And the rice pappadoms are completely new to me but I love the look of it and the crispiness. BTW, I also have similar plates. 😉

  15. The tomato rice is looking very tasty and beautifully done. Sabudana papad is also looking perfect and crisp.

  16. Papad is something that interests me! I love tapioca dessert but never ever seen this kind! So interesting and I want to make it. Your tomato rice looks delicious. I love how you plated it and presentation looks lovely! 🙂

  17. Oh my! These look so delicious & I’m amazed by Paped! Really gorgeous & I definitely going to try this recipe! Thanks for sharing! Awesome blog with beautiful pictures & amazing recipes! 🙂

  18. Hey, thanks for visiting my space and leaving your lovely comment. The vadagam preparation looks wonderful… Superb clicks too… Hope you have more happy times and keep smiling 🙂

  19. sorry to hear that you’ve been having a challenging couple of months, but i hope things are looking better for you. i so agree with you – cooking can be so therapeutic. this meal looks absolutely wonderful!

  20. Wow!! I love the sabudana papad! My mom also makes her yearly batch. I never make it because you need to dry them out in the sun or the sabudana becomes too hard when fried. Love this recipe, its a little bit different from my mom’s. Will try it when I get a chance!

  21. Sorry that you were going through a hard time.But as you said, thats the way you’re being tested!Glad that you bounced right back with this delicious papad and rice combo.I’ve never made these papad before but remember gorging on these growing-up.Will be trying your recipe for sure!Take care my friend 🙂

  22. Sorry to hear about the late troubles, but I’m glad that you find a way to calm yourself. Good for you. The food looks so delicious, surely it can calm the most troubled of days. Thanks for being a part of the YBR 🙂

  23. I am in love with the look of that rice, it is beautiful and the combo of ingredients are fantastic. Those little Papad are something I would really like to try making, very interesting. Have a wonderful day.

  24. Chin up, darling! Just remember to take some to time recognize all the things you’re grateful for and all the support your faith gives you and you’ll make it through just fine 🙂

    Awesome recipe, by the way. Amazing tomato rice!

  25. Your post made me want to reach out and hug you! I am so glad your kitchen is a safe and fulfilling place for you! This recipe has inspired me to try making the pappadums! the tapioca is just so interesting!

    I’ll be saying a prayer that things look up for you and things mellow out in your life! Blessings!

  26. I’m sorry you are having a hard time, but it’s true that these times pass, and your faith will help see you through. Cooking is my place of peace when I’m having a hard time too, but my pictures aren’t nearly as amazing as yours. 🙂

  27. My life been spinning like crazy; one after the one terrible things. But I suppose that’s life and I have sprung up though these were days I was down to the max.

    Papads and the rice dish; totally jives together with awesome flavors.

  28. Scrumptious! Both specialities look wonderful. The kind of food I enjoy.

    I’m sorry to hear that you have been going through a difficult period lately… Cooking is so soul-uplifting and can help overcome depression.



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