How to Cook Perfect Indian Pilaf/Pilau Rice

I mentioned recently that the “focus” of my Blog this year, is to create recipes that I would want to print in a personal cookbook, if I ever decided to publish one in the future. This helps give me clarity as I think carefully and more clearly about the recipes I would love enough to make time and time again, and be proud to pass on to my friends and family. I’m still learning, and am unsure what my “forte” might be, but one thing I DO know, is that this book would have one big, fat awesome indian section in it! I just love cooking and eating Indian food too much–it’s a problem, so much so, that i’m actually going to start doing Yoga or running first thing in the morning {I can’t decide on which yet}. I wish I could be more decisive in life! But all I know is that for now, I am going to be doing a lot of Indian cooking as I work my way through a list of popular dishes I am determined to master this year.

Pilau rice is just one of those classic Indian side-dishes that I really wanted to learn. In England, when I worked at an Indian restaurant, and went out to dinner at countless others, they never served Indian food with plain white rice–it was always basmati “Pilaf” rice, which you could get sweetened, or plain, or with mushrooms in it {everything’s better with mushrooms in it!} I haven’t had it in YEARS, but today when I made Chicken Tikka Masala with a side of this sweet Pilaf rice, I was in heaven! The sweetness countered the spiciness so perfectly, that I probably won’t go back to serving boring, plain white rice with it ever again! So, here’s definitely a recipe I WILL use time and time again, and am very excited to pass to friends and family, and all of you! It’s a must-have! I hope you love it!

Ingredients:
1 cup Basmati Rice
salt
Olive Oil
1/2 cup chopped cashews
1/2 cup flaked coconut
2 Tbsp salted butter

Directions:
Rinse the rice in water 2-3 times to remove any excess starch. Place the rice in a bowl, cover with water, and let soak for 30 minutes. Drain the water, then add the rice to a saucepan with 2 cups fresh water, a sprinkle of salt and a dash of olive oil. Bring to a boil over high heat, then place a lid on the saucepan, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 15 minutes until the rice is light and fluffy and has absorbed all the water. Add 2 Tbsp salted butter, chopped cashews, and coconut to the rice, fluffing and mixing with a fork, and serve with fresh cilantro and additional spices if desired.

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<3 Sarah