Sunday, February 12, 2012
Veg pulav/Tomato rice
I have been married into a wonderful family.United,supportive and happy....a true blessing in every way!A houseful of loving people,who will always be there for each other,come rain or sunshine!
And I have two co-sisters,both of them excellent home makers and incredible cooks.Back home ,whenever I'm with them in the kitchen,I always volunteer to do the dishes because I simply cannot seem to master the art of 'cooking by instinct',without written down recipes or accurate measurements.It is with such ease that they throw in a little bit of this here and a little bit of that there to cook up 'perfect' dishes every time!They have always been a source of inspiration and I've learned so much from them.
The basic rice recipe in this dish is borrowed from one of them,Pinky chechy.She calls it 'tomato rice',and I when I added a good lot of vegetables to it(as my fridge needed a clearing up),it became a veg pulav!And this dish,I tell you,is too good to be vegetarian.It is a favorite even in a 'strictly non-veg' household like mine.Do try it.Tomato rice or veg pulav...either way it is just too good!
Sending this as my entry for the Indian cooking event at Lisa's kitchen.
2 cups rice(I like to use jeera rice)
1 medium onion(finely chopped)
2 large tomatoes
A handful of coriander leaves
2 tbsp broken cashew nuts
1/4 cup grated coconut
6 each of pepper corns,cardamom and cloves
2" piece of cinnamon
1 1/2 tbsp ginger garlic paste
2 green chillies crushed(less or more according to your taste)
1 tsp kashmiri chilly powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp garam masala powder
Enough refined oil
Vegetables of your choice:
1/2 cup carrot cubed
1/2 cup potato cubed
1/2 cup beans cut into 1/2" pieces
1/2 cup cauliflower split into florets
1 cup button mushrooms halved
1/2 cup green peas
Cook rice and keep aside.
Saute mushrooms in a little oil over high flame till all the water evaporates and keep aside.
Cook peas in water until soft.
Cook the remaining vegetables(carrot,potato,beans and cauliflower) in a pressure cooker for one whistle.Remove lid to prevent vegetables from losing color and keep aside.
Blanch tomatoes in water,peel skin and puree in mixer.
Soak coriander leaves in water for a while and grind in mixer.
Grind the cashew and coconut together with a little water to make a paste.
Heat oil in a large kadai and splutter the spices.
Add ginger garlic paste and green chillies and stir for a minute.
Add chopped onions and stir till translucent.
Add the powders(chilly,turmeric and garam masala) and stir well.
Cook till the raw smell goes and the oil rises to the top.Sprinkle a little water if necessary.
Add the coriander paste and cook for a while.
Add the tomato puree and stir.Cook on medium-low flame till well cooked and an aroma rises.
Add the cashew /coconut paste and cook while stirring.
Add the cooked vegetables including the peas and mushrooms and mix carefully.
Remove from flame.
Take a large pan,add the rice and gravy alternately and start mixing it together little by little until you feel that you have added enough gravy to coat all the rice and give it a beautiful golden color.Adding more gravy makes the pulav clumpy and less makes it dry.Reserve the remaining gravy in the freezer for later.
You can bake this for 10 to 15 minutes in a hot oven or microwave it for 3-4 minutes because the rice would have cooled a bit by now.
Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve with raita and achar.
Note:Just don't add the vegetables to the gravy for the tomato rice variation.