Spicy Vegetable Pulao

Basmati Rice flavored with exotic spices cooked with fresh assorted vegetables is often called pulao or pilaf. They are delicious and nutritious in their own way. The aroma of the spices blended with Basmati rice is so delightful. It is served along side a thick Yogurt Sauce what we call Raita and is often served as a main course.
This is one of my favorite dishes. I have few different recipes for Pulao. This recipe is easy to prepare and very tasty!
I learnt this version of vegetable pulao recipe from a good friend of mine. When I had this for the first time I just loved it, and ever since it’s been a regular dish in my kitchen.
My friend had added few Craisins or dry sweetened cranberries. The hint of sweetness & tartness from the dry sweetened cranberries blends very well with the spicy flavor!I liked it and have been adding them everytime now. You can simply skip on craisins if you don’t like or can happily substitute them with raisins!!

You will need

1½ cups basmati rice
Vegetables like peas, carrots, French beans, potatoes about 1 ½ cups
1 large Onion chopped into length wise/vertically
2 medium Tomatoes chopped
2 tsp Cashew halves
3 tsp craisins
½ tsp Fennel/saunf seeds
4 tbsp butter/ghee (or equal amount of cooking oil)
Salt to taste
Coriander leaves chopped 2 tbsp

To make paste:

Garlic cloves 3
Ginger 1”inch
Green chillies 5 (you can add more if you want it spicy)
Red chillies 5
Cloves 4
Cardamom pods 2
Cinnamon stick 1” inch
1 tbsp coriander seeds/ dhania
½ tsp cumin seeds/ jeera
Turmeric powder a pinch


1. Wash the rice in 4-5 changes of water and soak in water for 30 minutes.

2. Make a fine paste of the above mentioned ingredients.

3. Melt the butter in a pan or pressure cooker whichever you intend to use and fry the onions, cashew halves & fennel seeds till golden.

4. Add the craisins and stir for a minute or two and pour in the ground paste. Fry this well on a medium flame till the raw smell fades and also it leaves oil on the sides. Be careful not to burn.

5. Throw in the chopped tomatoes & chopped coriander leaves and fry further till soft and mushy. Add the vegetables and fry for another minute or two.

6. Add rice and fry till the rice becomes transparent. Now pour in the water, I added about 2 ½ cups of water. You can use the same proportion for water depending on the rice you use. But in my guess adding little less than equal will be good else the basmati rice can be mushy & also looks over cooked.

7. Add salt, coriander leaves and mix well. Cook for 1 or 2 whistles if using a pressure cooker. I cooked for 1 whistle.
If cooking in a pan or kadai then keep checking periodically so that the rice doesn’t stick to the bottom and sprinkle water if needed. Cook till the rice is done and make sure the grains are separate and not sticky.

8. Let the cooker cool by itself. Serve along side Raita.


pushpa said...

Hmm! another yummy looking dish!Though I dont eat much rice but I'm thinking of giving it a try.

Anonymous said...

Whenever I think of a cookie or a cake egg comes to my mind. Nice to see a cookie recipie withoue a egg :) I will give it a try and let you know my comments...

Anu said...

Thanks Pushpa, I am so happy that you are thinking of giving it a try!Good luck!!

Thanks Anon,try it and let me know!good luck!

Aruna said...

Anu, The veggie pulap looks lipsmacking, i'm drooling all over. Will try it!!! Thx for sharing. Keep it comming.

Sameer said...

now pulao is one of my favorites. need to come your place one of these days :D yum yum (greedy me).

in central asian countries it is called plov, in caspian countries pilaf.

but then, all i feel like doing is to stuff a lot of it in my mouth

Anu said...

Thanks Aruna,
Sameer, You are more than welcome:d
and also thanks!!

Roselene said...

Thanks for this wonderful recipe....I cooked it today and it was one of the best pulao i ever had...

Anu said...

Thanks Roselene, I am glad you liked it.

silna said...

god its looks so yummy and im going to try it today itself..got one doubt about using the red chilli..since u dont use chilli powder and the dish has nice red colour..did u use kashmiri chilli for the paste?

Anu said...

Silna, I used regular red chillies, no food color for me :). Tomatoes imparts red color :) which is what you see. Try using vine riped ones.