Poha (Aval) in Yoghurt

Flattened rice in yoghurt and fresh herbs

Poha (Aval) is parboiled rice (rice partially boiled in the husk) which is flattened. It is available in different thicknesses. For this dish you need thick poha. Poha is nutritionally superior to white rice as parboiling retains most of the nutrients. Parboiling also increases the formation of resistant starch which can act as a prebiotic and promote gut health. Poha can be consumed with little or no cooking and is easier to digest.

  1. Pick over poha, wash and drain. Soak in 1 ½ cups water for 30 minutes. Drain in a colander. 

  2. Whisk yoghurt with ½ cup water.

  3. In a large serving bowl combine poha, yoghurt, onion, green chilli, ginger, salt, coconut and coriander leaves. Mix well. 

  4. In a small saucepan heat oil and cumin seeds over a moderate heat. When cumin starts to sizzle, add cashew nuts, fry until golden. Stir in curry leaves and dry red chilli. Turn off the heat. Allow to cool. Stir into poha yoghurt mixture. Serve at room temperature.

Serve with vegetable and/or legume dish.


  • Grated carrot or diced cucumber can be added.

Per serve: energy 885 kJ (211 cal); protein 9 g; fat 8 g; saturated fat 2 g; cholesterol 3 mg; carbohydrate 24 g; fibre 4 g; calcium 229 mg; iron 2.1 mg; sodium 473 mg

Serves 3


½ cup thick poha (flattened rice)

1 cup fat free plain yoghurt

½ cup finely chopped onion

1 green chilli, sliced and seeded

1 cm piece ginger, sliced

½ teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon grated fresh coconut

¼ cup chopped coriander leaves


2 teaspoons peanut or extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

8 cashew nuts, broken into pieces

8-10 curry leaves (optional)

1 dry red chilli, halved