Blue rice with butterfly-pea flower

How do you know you’re getting all the nutrient that your body needs? Eat different color fruits and vegetables that reflect the color of the rainbow.

That’s because different color results from different plant chemicals that is beneficial for our body.

butterflypea flower

A sustainable way to incorporate blue into your diet
Unfortunately, in Malaysia, blue and purple vegetables are rare and expensive e.g purple cabbage and blueberries.

What’s a feasible way to incorporate blue plant pigment into your diet then? Rice dyed with butterfly-pea or blue-pea flower.

In Malay, the flower is known as bunga telang. It’s commonly used to colour Kelantanese nasi kerabu and Nyonya kuih ketan/pulut tai tai.


Though they are not common or available at the supermarket, they are easily grown. Like herbs, they can be sun-dried and keep them for a long time.

Blue rice with butterfly pea flower

Health benefits for butterfly pea flower
The flower has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries to help enhance memory, reduce stress and depression. These are shown to be true in animal tests. Recently, studies shows that it contains peptides that are potentially anti-cancer agents. (source: wikipedia)

Blue rice with butterfly pea flower

> butterfly pea flower
> rice
> water



1. Dip in water Pour dried flowers in a glass of water.
3. Extract colour Wth your hands in the water, extract colour into the water by squeezing the flowers. In a while, the water should turn dark blue.
3. Squeeze and remove Squeeze the water out of the flower and discard them.
4. Pour water into rice cooker and cook (Water to brown rice ratio is 2 : 3). If it’s not enough, simply add more water.
Blue rice with butterfly pea flower

Do you eat any blue or purple pigment food?   

Image credit: Bisou Rose and Amruf.

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