Samak Rice Pulao: Savoring Tradition on Navratri and Ekadashi

Samak Rice Samak Rice: Samak Rice Pulao, also known as samak/sama/samvat/samo/bhagar and Barnyard Millet Pulao, is a delightful dish commonly prepared during Hindu fasting periods such as Navratri and Ekadashi. This simple yet flavorsome pulao is a staple during religious observances in India.

Samak Rice

  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Cuisine: North Indian
  • Course: Main Course
  • Diet: Vegetarian
  • Difficulty Level: Moderate


To Soak:

  1. 1 cup barnyard millet (samak rice)
  2. Water (as required for soaking)
  3. To Crush In Mortar Pestle:
  4. 1 inch ginger (peeled and roughly chopped)
  5. 1 green chili (roughly chopped)

To Roast:

  1. 2 tablespoons peanuts
  2. Additional Ingredients:
  3. 2 tablespoons ghee or oil
  4. 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  5. ½ inch cinnamon stick
  6. 2 to 3 cloves
  7. 2 green cardamoms
  8. 3 to 4 black peppercorns
  9. 8 to 10 curry leaves
  10. 1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves
  11. 2 medium-sized potatoes (peeled and cubed)
  12. 2.5 to 3 cups water (or as needed)
  13. Rock salt (edible and food grade, as required)

For Garnish:

  1. 1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves
  2. 8 to 10 cashews
  3. 8 to 10 almonds (sliced)
  4. Lemon juice or lemon wedges (as required)

Also Read: Bread Roll



  1. Rinse the barnyard millet thoroughly in water, similar to rinsing rice.
  2. Soak the millet in enough water for 20 to 30 minutes.
  3. After soaking, discard the water and set the millet aside.
  4. Dry roast the peanuts until crunchy, then coarsely powder them.
  5. Crush ginger and green chili into a paste using a mortar-pestle.

Making Samak Rice Pulao:

  1. Heat oil or ghee in a 3-liter pressure cooker over low to medium-low heat.
  2. Add cumin seeds, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, and black peppercorns. Fry until fragrant and cumin crackles.
  3. Add the crushed ginger-green chili paste and sauté for half a minute on low heat.
  4. Add cubed potatoes, curry leaves, and chopped coriander leaves. Cook over low heat for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Mix in the powdered peanuts and stir well. Keep heat low.
  6. Add the soaked millet to the mixture and stir thoroughly.
  7. Pour in water and salt as needed. Pressure cook on medium heat for 4 to 5 whistles or until the water is absorbed and the millet grains are cooked.
  8. While the pulao is cooking, dry roast the chopped cashews and almonds.
  9. When serving, garnish the Samak Rice Pulao with roasted nuts and chopped coriander leaves.
  10. Sprinkle some lemon juice over the pulao before serving. Alternatively, you can serve it with lemon wedges on the side, if desired.

Also Read: Navratan Korma


  • If not preparing for fasting, peas, cauliflower, or beans can be added to the pulao.
  • Adjust water quantity for desired texture; reduce to 2.5 cups for a more separate texture.

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