April 6, 2013

Vegetable Biryani (quick-fix-shortcut)

There are times when you are not in a mood to cook an elaborate meal. You just feel like finishing off with the kitchen as soon as possible and catch up with some television or your favorite book; yet want to eat something yum. I know, I know.. we are of a weird specie - want to eat, don't want to cook, want to pursue hobby, don't want to do dishes. Guess what this weird is normal.
At such times what I do is, pop in a few veggies with spices, and rice into the cooker, wait for a whistle and I am done with the meal. The number of veggies is directly proportional to your mood to cut them :)

Vegetable Pulav

Before you begin:
Soak 1 glass/cup of basmati rice (can be ordinary rice also - like sona masuri) 20 min prior.

Rice - 2 cups
Ghee - 2 tbsp
Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp
Bay leaf - 2
Cloves - 4
Cinnamon -1 inch stick
Peppercorns - 12-15
Cashews - 5 broken pieces
Raisins - 8
Ginger - garlic paste - 1 tsp
Onion - 1 
Tomato - 1
Mix Veggies - as in the picture
Biryani Masala - 2 tbsp (I use Everest brand)
Coriander and Mint (optional) leaves - 1 cup mixed - chopped

How I prepare:
  1. Heat ghee in a pressure cooker. Add jeera, bay leaf, cloves, cinnamon stick, peppercorns, cashews, raisins.
  2. After about half a minute, add chopped onions and ginger-garlic paste. Saute onions, and add chopped tomatoes. Next, add all the vegetables (you can see in the picture), salt and saute well.
  3. Add in biryani masala and mix well. At this point put in the soaked rice and keep frying.
  4. I prefer adding a whole lot of chopped coriander leaves and mint leaves (optional) right at this stage. 
  5. Pour in water, with ratio of rice to water 1:1 for Basmati rice and 1:2 for sona masuri. Remember we already soaked the rice and it already has some water content.
  6. Taste test for salt and spice, stir and close the cooker. Wait for one whistle and turn off the gas. Open only after the pressure goes off in its own course. Do not force open the cooker.
  7. Enjoy the aroma :D 
  8. Before serving, you may sprinkle fried onions just to give a feel of authenticity. (cheating's allowed) ;)
  9. Serve hot with your favourite raita - cucumber, onion, tomato or boondi.....or just plain curd.
Vegetable Pulav

Do try this quick fix biryani and let me know your experience!

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