This pulao is a quick one pot meal. It is ideal for your tiffin box or can be prepared within minutes if you are running short of time to prepare an elaborate meal. It is delicious & healthy too. It was one of those days when I was not in a mood to cook many dishes so I prepared this pulao in a pressure cooker & it was ready so quickly. It was simple & tasty hence I thought I should post this for you to try out… Enjoy! J
2 cups Basmati Rice
1 cup Sweet Corn niblets
1 cup fresh Green Peas
1 med. Onion (peeled & finely chopped)
2 med.Tomatoes (blanch, remove skin & finely chopped)
2 fresh Green Chillies (slit)
¼ tsp. Turmeric pwd. (Haldi)
1 tsp. fresh Ginger paste
2 tsp. fresh Garlic paste
2 Vegetable Stock Cubes (crumbled) ( I used 2 imported large cubes, you may use maggi)
Whole Garam Masala – (4 cloves, 6 peppercorns,1 inch piece cinnamon stick,
1 bay leaf, 2 green cardamom, 2 small pieces star anise, 1 black cardamom)
1 stalk Celery ( leaves & stem finely chopped)
A Pinch of Sugar
5 cups Water /sufficient water
3 tbsps Vegetable Oil/Olive Oil
1 tsp. Desi Ghee/ Amul Ghee/Butter
2 tbsps. Coriander Leaves (chopped )
2 tbsps. Crisp fried Onions
Pick, clean & wash the basmati rice 3- 4 times or till the water runs clear.
Soak the rice in water for about ½ hr. Drain & keep aside.
Heat oil on med. in a pressure cooker.
Add the whole garam masala & let it splutter.
Then add the onion & saute till soft.
Next add the ginger-garlic pastes & saute till the oil starts to separate.
Slide in the tomatoes & cook till soft.
Add the turmeric pwd., slit chillies, chicken cubes, celery, sugar & fry well.
Add the corn, peas & gently saute again.
Now add the drained rice & mix gently; preferably with a wooden spoon till the rice is well mixed with the masala.
Fry the rice for about a minute on sim.
Pour in water & stir gently till mixed well.
Adjust salt & pepper to taste.
Pressure cook for 2 whistles. Immediately release pressure completely. Let it sit for about a minute before opening the cooker. The cooking process is completed with the heat in the cooker.
Open the cooker; let it cool slightly & then drizzle some butter/ghee evenly on top & sides.
Do not stir. Let it cool slightly again; this helps to retain separate grains of rice to some extent. Serve garnished with crisp fried onions & fresh coriander.
Tips & Variations :
If using dekchi/handi/pot stir & check regularly. Cover the top of the pan with a damp muslin cloth replace the lid & cook on sim for last 10 mins.
Pressure cooking takes off the load of checking whether the rice is cooked from time to time. Added bonus is that it helps to retain the flavor.
Aged rice helps to retain separate grain better.
Use your discretion & judgement while using water for cooking the rice – depends how familiar you are with your pressure cooker/dekchi cooking.
If you are using a particular batch of rice for the first time then test by cooking a very small quantity & you will realize whether it has too much starch or if the rice fluffs well & retains separate grain.
Instead of vegetable cubes, you may use vegetable stock if you have it handy.
You may use a bouquet garni in your pulao/biryani if you wish to eliminate the tedious task of taking out whole spices from the dish individually.
The Bouquet Garni :
The bouquet garni is a bundle of herbs/ whole spices (garam masala) usually bound together in a muslin cloth & tied with a string & dropped in the cooking pot containing any liquid i.e. soup, broth, stew etc. with other ingredients, but it is removed prior to consumption.