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
Green chillies 5 (you can add more if you want it spicy)
Red chillies 5
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.