You have love white rice, brown rice, Basmati rice, Jasmine rice but if you’re super health conscious and feel guilty about consuming carbs, bring home Bamboo rice or Moongil Arisi in Tamil, Veduru Biyyam in Telugu.
Quite popular among the Tribal communities in the forests in and around Kodaikanal, Kanyakumari for many generations, Bamboo rice is gaining inroads into the modern kitchens, thanks to health-conscious-organic-food lovers.
Not a regular rice and very tough to harvest, the tribal community in these regions for many generations have put in considerable efforts in saving this amazing crop. Bamboo plants grow taller in forests and the rice is actually the seed produced by the flowering plant at the end of its life span. The produce is highly unpredictable as the plants flower once in 30 years.
The harvesting too is a tedious process only mastered by the tribal community. “Harvesting Bamboo is a skill and it needs a special training. The base of each bamboo clump is thoroughly cleaned and then get dried. It will be gently shaken which loosens up the clump and rice comes out. The effort in harvesting Bamboo rice is totally worth it for its incredible medicinal values,” explains K P Bhat from Kasragod district of Kerala who has been popularising Bamboo rice for the past few years.
This nutty, chewy rice that looks similar to wheat grains is unique not just for its flavour but also for its amazing nutritional values. Highly recommended by Ayurveda for those suffering from stiff neck pain, back pain and diabetes a 100 grams bamboo rice consists 60 grams of carbs, zero fat and enormous amounts of energy.