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Simply Kashmiri!

On several occasions in the past, this blog has dwelt on the legendary Wazwan cuisine of Kashmir – a culinary style involving long lists of ingredients, elaborate preparations and multiple stages of cooking. It needs a lot of time and plenty of effort. But not all Kashmiri food is this complicated. In today’s post, we will explore a dish that exudes simplicity – a dish made using two ingredients that Kashmir is famous for: elegant, long-grained Basmati rice and golden-yellow cold-pressed Mustard Oil.

This is a dish from the culinary repertoire of the Kashmiri Pandits. It is typically prepared for festivals and celebratory occasions. Like most other Kashmiri Pandit dishes, this one too doesn’t use onions, garlic or tomatoes – but that doesn’t make it any less delicious.

This traditional dish from Kashmir is called Tahar. Let’s begin by gathering the ingredients that we will be using.


  1. Basmati Rice: 400 grams

  2. Mustard Oil: 2 tablespoons

  3. Turmeric (Haldi), ground: Half a teaspoon

  4. Salt: to taste

That’s it! All you need are four simple ingredients for making this amazing dish.

The quantities mentioned above are for preparing four servings. Adjust the quantities proportionately to suit the number of servings that you require.


Rinse the Basmati rice grains well and then soak them in around one litre of warm water for 20 minutes or so. Then drain the water.


Add the drained Basmati Rice to a pan. Add around 600 millilitres of water. Also add the ground turmeric and salt to taste. Stir to mix well.

Now turn the flame on and set it to Medium heat. Cover the pan and cook for around five minutes. Then reduce the flame to Low and let the contents of the pan simmer till all the water has evaporated and the rice is done. Use a fork to fluff the rice, separating the grains gently.

Next, heat the Mustard Oil in a pan on a High flame till the oil reaches its smoking point and emits streams of deliciously aromatic white smoke. Turn the flame off.

Transfer the bright yellow rice to a serving dish. Pour the smoked Mustard Oil over the top of the rice.

Your traditional Kashmiri Tahar is now ready. Serve it hot. This dish is usually eaten as a side dish. Some food lovers like to add a dollop of ghee to accentuate the flavour. Try it – you won’t be disappointed, that’s one thing you can be sure of!

You can find more recipes at :

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