Prep 15 mins
Cook 25 mins
My Indian friend gave me this from his mothers chefs cookbook. Its wonderful. People always fail with rice. The secret is in the PAN, and amount of water used. Steam cooks rice.You can use the same method for plain basmati too. just using a little oil.
- 2 cups basmati rice
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 6 cloves
- 6 -8 green cardamoms, split (or 6 black)
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 teaspoon cumin seed
- 2 teaspoons sugar (brown is better)
- 5 tablespoons sunflower oil
- 1 teaspoon marine salt
- First soak rice in tepid water min 10 mins (tepid gets rid of any starch quicker. I use a sieve immersed in a pan of water). Rinse through. Leave to drain 10 mins more.
- In an enamelled cast iron pan(18 or 20 cm Le creuset is perfect) gently fry onions in oil until brown and soft but NOT burned.
- This should take around 15 minutes Then add cinnamon cardamoms and cloves. When cloves begin to swell add sugar. Gently fry until sugar starts to caramelise. Then add cumin and fry 1 min more.
- Stir in rice and mix until it takes on color.
- Have a kettle of boiling water ready and add just sufficient to cover rice by 1cm. Add salt and stir once.
- Crank up the heat to high. Place lid on pan and DO NOT TOUCH! When jet of steam appears count 2 mins and then reduce to medium for 3 mins more. Then reduce to absolute minimum for 10 more minutes At this point you can lift lid and fluff. (add a few tsps of water if very dry). Replace lid, TURN OFF and leave 10 mins more. You can also pop in low oven if a little sticky. Normally none of these remedial steps are necessary but can get you out of trouble if you got it wrong!
- Remove hard spices before eating.
- Serve on its own, with a favorite curry or veg. For plain rice just leave out the spices.