Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Vegetable Pulao/ Vegetable Rice

I am addicted to rice. More of a bane than boon, this addiction has led to very difficult situations, especially because I cannot sleep at night unless I have had at least a little bit of rice. There have been instances when I woke up at midnight (or even at 1 pm!) and cooked rice and ate with pickle or curd. I do not think this has anything to do with being a South Indian (a Mallu), because my parents have always had chapathis for dinner. However, Amma always ensured that there was rice for me at night since I insisted on eating rice even if I had 1 or 2 chapathis.

Of course, this addiction has also led to serious weight issues as well, especially after motherhood when I totally gave up any form of exercise, and all that carbohydrate got converted to fat! All diets go for a toss when I give into the tempation for rice after 1-2 days. 

Anyway, though my staple diet is rice, I have not posted many rice based dishes on my blog yet! The only two I could find are Ajwain Rice and Curd Rice. I realized this after Nags announced that she is hosting Monthly Mingle #33 - Ravishing Rice Recipes at Edible Garden. Monthly Mingle is an event started by Meeta.

I wanted to post something simple, but I decided to overcome my laziness and dedicate a post to Amma's version of Vegetable Pulao/ Vegetable Rice. I give it the alternate name of Vegetable Rice because I am not very sure if this fits into the definition of a Pilaf or Pulao. Whatever the name, I love this dish because of the vegetables and the preparation.

To make the Vegetable Rice in the picture, you will need:

Basmati Rice - 4 cups (serves 6)
Water - 6 cups (or per instructions for the Basmati Rice)

Tomatoes - finely chopped - 4-5
Onions - chopped lengthwise - 2 large
Ginger Garlic Green chilly paste - 3-4 tbsp (about 2 green chillies only)
Spring Onions 
(You can use any vegetable you prefer. We added spring onions because it happened to be in the fridge and did not add potatoes because we ran out of potatoes)
Peas - 1 cup
Carrot - chopped - 2 
Beans - chopped - about 200 gm
Cauliflower florets - 2 cups 
Coriander leaves - chopped

Bread - small pieces - 2 cups

Cloves - 5-6
Whole pepper corns - 6-8
Cinnamon - small broken sticks - 2-3
Cardamom - 3-4 pods

Cashew and Raisins - as desired

Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder - 1 tsp
Cumin seeds powder - 1 tsp
Red chilly powder- 2 tsp
Garam Masala powder - 1 tsp

Salt - 1/2 tsp for rice, to taste for the vegetables
Ghee or butter - 2 tbsp for rice, 1 tsp each for onions, dry fruits, and bread
Vegetable oil - 2 tbsp

  • Heat 2 tbsp of ghee in a large pan, add the whole pepper, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and after roasting a little, add the washed basmati rice and roast for a few minutes stirring slowly, and remove to another bowl
  • In the electric rice cooker, bring 6 cups of water to boil and add the rice with 1/2 tsp of salt and leave to cook

  • Heat another tsp of ghee in the pan and add one chopped onion to this and roast well until dark brown and keep aside
  • Similarly, roast the bread and cashews and raisins separately in a tsp of ghee and keep aside
  • Heat 2 tsp of vegetable oil and saute the srping onions separately and keep aside
  • Heat 2 tbsp of vegetable oil in a pan and saute the remaining chopped onion along with ginger garlic paste
  • Add tomatoes and once the tomatoes are done, add all the vegetables - carrot, peas, beans, cauliflower - along with turmeric, coriander, cumin seeds powder,  garam masala, and salt to taste, cook covered on low flame
Do not add water unless absolutely necessary (tomato and vegetables give out water which is sufficient)

  • Once the vegetables are cooked, add the spring onions and mix well 

  • In the rice cooker, start layering the rice and vegetables and cashews, raisins, bread, onions as you would in a biriyani
First, add one glass of water, then rice, then vegetables, then bread, then cashew and raisins, then onions, and repeat layers until all are added and leave in 'keep warm' mode so that all the flavours are absorbed by the rice
  • Garnish with the onions, cashews, raisins, bread and chopped coriander leaves
Serve with raita of choice

We had ours with mint chutney and cucumber raita.

This is my entry to Monthly Mingle #33 - Ravishing Rice Recipes


Nags said...

my mom adds bread to biryani. its so yum. i am lazy to do that additional step usually :)

Thanks a ton for the entry Shreya!

Sharmila said...

Love the look of that rice .. and it looks delicious too! Adding bread to rice is very new to me ... maybe I'll try once. :-)

Gita's Kitchen said...

That's a healthy dish...looks delicious :)

Lavanya said...

looks delicious..very nice!!

Rush said...

looks great and healthywit all the veggies!!

Cris said...

You could live here, we have rice everyday... :-) This dish looks so beautiful!

Valarmathi said...

Looks lovely. Healthy and delicious pulao.

Pavithra said...

Looks so healthy and delicious .. very colorful too.

DEESHA said...

I love rice too But i've mostly had chapatis for dinner .. nice pulao

Ramya Vijaykumar said...

Vegetable pulav looks simply stunning and healthy... love the blend of colors from the veggies!!!

Laavanya said...

I love the fried bread pieces that are added to biryani.. looks awesome Shreya - very tempting rice.

Superchef said...

one of my most fav comfort food. Looks very colourful and loved the addition of bread to this. Ive usually seen this only in biryanis.

sowmya said...

looks yumm..nice recipe..

Anonymous said...

Wow...it looks rich and yummy! Never added bread to rice...seems innovative :)

Priti said...

R u out of your mind to eat 1am rice! Imagine even to cook at 1am !! Me too same...anything I go with rice call it pulao ;)...added few times bread too..it taste yum isnt' it...but am too lazy to do tht now ..hehe inbtw ur pulao looks so yum...n frm when u started taking step by step pics ..hehe ...way to go gal

Dolon said...

i love biriyani . Wheather its vegetable or chicken or anything else .
Picture is looking super delicious . Will try next week .
Also please do visit my blog @

Adam said...

For some reason I can imagine you waking up at 1am and cooking. I mean that's daytime over where I am :)

Thanks for the veggie filled recipe. This is a great way to sneak a few more into your diet. I always say strive for five :)

Cham said...

U re pretty much like me, I cannot sleep without having a rice! Good recipe!

A_and_N said...

I love rice too! I'd love to eat it all the time if it promised to show on me :|

rekhas kitchen said...

delicious and very healthy with all those vegetables. looks yummy

Anonymous said...

I'm visiting your blog for the first time and I'm quite impressed with all your recipes. Wonderful blog!

Thanks for sharing all your recipes.