A red rice
A bold rice
A revived rice
A loved rice
Revived from oblivion by committed farmers, the seeds found, multiplied, shared, sowed and the beautiful bold rice brought to our homes & plates.
A medium duration rice: 150 -160 days
Five long months that the farmer waits, with bated breath, praying for rains on time,
Figuring out the weather, looking out for pest attacks or diseases…
Preparing kashayams, amlams, bio-enzymes, pest traps..
Counts begins from sowing the seed to harvest,
Wayanad paddy seasons are different from the paddy seasons of rest of Kerala. The first season in Wayanad is Nanja, when nature at its best is drenched by the south west monsoons with a slight chill in the air. Nanja begins end of June and goes to December. The second season in Wayanad is Punja , the shorter season when shorter duration paddy or pulses are grown from residual moisture and some rain. The fertile mountainside paddy fields with lower night temperatures have many traditional paddy varieties suitable for both seasons.
The Thondi rice we bring from Wayanad is a variety called Kullan thondi ( literally meaning dwarf thondi ). It is grown during Nanja season.Short, with relatively higher yield than other Thondi variants, drought resistant ( essential with the ever scantier rain), the farmers love its resilience and its ability not to lodge on maturity.
Grown by a committed group ( the band is growing every season , reposing on us the responsibility of learning to love and use traditional rice varieties ) of organic farmers, one of whom is Rajesh a friend and fellow traveller. This rice brings memories of the beautiful verdant paddy fields , the low rain clouds and hills of Wayanad to my plate.
Loved by the people of the Wayanadan hills, this bold grained rice known for its taste is also bran rich and provides energy that lasts the whole day. Our Thondi rice comes with bran of 60- 70%, making the rice fibre rich . A small quantity of rice will satiate while providing extra fibre. It is great as parboiled rice for table rice and the raw rice can translate into puttu, kozhukattai et al
Cooking instructions: Don’t stint on the water or whistles; soak for two hours, add water 1:3.5 ; First three whistles on high flame and then let it cook for another 3-4 whistles on low flame.
Try it, cook it, eat it , love it, live it….the rice needs us as much as we need the rice.
And my gratitude to the young and knowledgeable seed conserver and farmer Lenish for the information he generously imparts about the rices of Kerala.
If you would like to buy and try Thondi rice check out : https://shop.biobasics.org/category/17945/parboiled-rice/:
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