The Green Blog Project had set me thinking on my own little contribution to taking this world, in to little baby steps towards a greener tomorrow and a pesticide free tomorrow. I had planted little methi seeds in my own little patio garden in my apartment and I got lovely green tender methi leaves. I had been wanting to use those tiny leaves and this was my chance. I had some leftover rice from dinner and I decided to make Alu Methi Pulav as an express preparation for my husband`s lunch for the morrow.
All the ingredients would ber definitely available in your pantry at all times. The only two spices that are a must are Star Anise and ShahiJeera or Somph. These cant be substituted as they constitute the base flavour for the whole pulav, of course apart from the methi.
1 medium onion sliced long.
2 Potatoes chopped to fine pieces.
3-4 Star Anise.
Small piece of Cinnamon.
1 tsp of Shahi Jeera or Somph.
1 Bay Leaf.
1/2 spoon Red Chilli Powder.
Garam Masala to taste.
Freshly chopped Methi seeds or 1 Tbsp of Kasuri Methi.
4-5 Cashews sliced in to halves.
Salt to taste.
Ghee for garnish.
Pop the chopped pieces of potatoes in to the microwave after sprinkling a little salt on them. Cook for 3 mins on HIGH. Set aside.
Take a wok or kadai and add 2 spoons of oil. Add the Star anise, shahijeera, cloves, cinnamon and cashew and allow to saute for a couple of seconds. The jeera and the anise give out a very delectable aroma.
Now add the chopped onions and saute for a few minutes until the onions turn a little pinkish brown.
Now add the semi cooked potatoes, turmeric, red chilli powder, salt, garam masala and stir it all in quickly.
Allow a few more minutes for the spices to sink in to the potatoes.
Now add the chopped fresh methi/ kasuri methi and stir in well.
After a few more minutes, add some chopped cilantro and mix well.
Now add the cooked rice , more salt as required and gently mix it taking care not to break the rice particles.
Finish off by dolloping a spoon of ghee.
Serve HOT with raitha. Excellent option for LUNCH along with Raitha or just plain curd.
Corriander has always been my all time favourite garnish. Now there are really two schools of thought on the subject of corriander garnish. My grandmother etc has always been on the opinion that a good dish prepared sumptously with ingredients in the right proportion, with devotion, can stand up for flavour and taste all by itself. It does not need a garnish of chopped corriander. I am of the opinion that even a simple dish can be elevated in taste and flavour by just a dash of a corriander sprig….Well…to each his own. TO think of a dish spiced completely with this aromatic leaf itself seemed to be a very welcoming thought…It was an inspiration from my earlier post Pudina Rice…I simlpy allowed my hands to pick up whatever It felt like and came up with this dish…
Today was a picnic at the Zoo, so it was a really tasty course with a side of Raitha and Chips. Do try it and hope you really like it.
A big bunch of Corriander Leaves.
5 Green Chillies.
1/3 cup of Dessicated Coconut.
1 inch piece of Ginger.
A handful of Cashew Halves.
2 cups of Basmati Rice cooked in 3 1/2 cups of water.
1/2 cup of Peas.
1/2 cup of chopped potatoes.
1/2 cup of finely chopped carrots.
1 cup of cauliflower floretts.
Spread out the cooked Basmati Rice so it cools considerably before you mix in the vegetables.
Microwave all the vegetables except Peas, in the micro wave for 4 minutes.
In a mixer jar, place the cashews at the very base and then add chillies, ginger, 1 clove, corrainder and finally the coconut. We do this since corriander cannot stand up to pulsing in the mixer without water, we sandwich it between heavy ingredients.
Pulse without adding water and set aside.
In a wide mouthed kadai add 3 spoons of oil, 2 cloves, jeera, curry leaves and then add the half cooked veggies.
Add turmeric and salt for the veggies and allow to cook for some time.
Now add the ground paste and mix well and give it a couple more minutes to cook and the raw smell of the corriander to evaporate.
When the veggies and the paste have mixed in well add the rice little by little and mix it well taking care not to break the rice.
Add a dollop of ghee and serve HOT with onion and cucumber raitha.
This was the Vegetble Rice that my mum used to make on those special sundays for lunch. Sunday mornings would be normally filled with strict timelines as all of us would want to have our oil baths and water would some times be restricted to specified times in the summer. A filling lunch of Amma`s Vegetable Rice, with Raita would always be something to look forward to. She always adds beetroot, which renders a special reddish tinge to the whole dish. It is very simple and easy and pretty much can be made with any vegetable thats available on hand.
I would cut the veggies in to little cubes for her,and this would make the whole thing very easy. It`s a wholesome, easy, colourful and filling lunch and I always pack it for long drives and potlucks!!!!
2 cups of basmati rice cooked.
1 Medium Onion chopped in to little pieces.
1 cup of finely diced potatoes.
1 cup of cauliflower florets.
1 cup of finely chopped carrots.
1/2 cup of chopped beetroot.
1/2 cup of peas.
1/2 cup of beans.
A pinch of turmeric.
1 spoon of red chilli powder.
Garam Masala Powder to taste.
3 slices of bread. (Optional)
Chopped Corriander to garnish.
Jeera and Star Anise to season.
Keep the cooked basmati rice to cool so it does not get sticky with the starch.
Take a wide mouthed kadai and add 2 spoons of ghee/oil and allow to get hot. When done, add jeera, star anise and curry leaves and immediately add the chopped onions.
You could pre-cook the potatoes, carrots, beetroots and cauliflower in the microwave for 4 minutes to it saves cooking time on the stove.
When the onions are well cooked, add all the veggies.
Add salt, turmeric, red chilli powder and a little garam masala and mix well.
Keep the flame on medium and allow the veggies to get cooked well.
Cut the bread slices in to big squares and lightly fry them in a spoon of ghee. Set aside.
When the vegetables are cooked, add the basmati rice, salt, a little more garam masala and stir in well.
Finally add the fried bread pieces and mix it in and garnish with chopped corriander.
Mushrooms are my all time favourite and I add them to anything I make- Pulavs, side dishes, subzis, pastas, salads etc. Yesterday was an official not-too-much-time-in-the-kitchen-day. So I grabbed some vegetables and my leftover mushrooms and created this rice dish. There is a small difference in the way this dish is made, which makes its taste also different. There are no harsh masalas and heavy garnishing. Its an easy tasting pulav and has no onions or potatoes, so its easy o the waistline. It`s also a quick fix entree so here it goes.
2 cups of Daawat Basmati Rice cooked and cooled.
1/2 cup of Peas.
1/2 cup of diced carrots.
1/2 cup of cauliflower florets.
1/3 cup of diced mushrooms.
1/4 cup of chopped mint leaves.
1 tsp garam masala.
1 tsp of chilli powder.
Pinch of turmeric.
1/2 tsp of cinnamon powder.
2 spoons of powdered old fashioned oats.
Seasoning: Bay Leaf, Cloves (2), Somph and curry leaves.
Take a wide mouthed kadai and pour about 2 spoons of oil. Add the cloves, somph, bay leaf, cinnamon powder and curry leaves in that order and allow them to fry in the oil for a couple of seconds.
Next, add the vegetables – carrots, cauliflowers, peas,turmeric and the required salt for the vegetables.
You could pre-cook the cauliflower and the diced carrots in the microwave so it lessens the time in front of the stove.
Stir in the chopped mushrooms and then sprinkle the chopped pudina, and red chilli powder over the vegetables and mix it in well.
After a few minutes, add the cooked rice to the vegetables. Add the garam masala and salt for the rice and mix it well. Take care that the mushrooms do not break, so stir it carefully.