Monday, July 12, 2010

Vegan Indian Brown Basmati Rice Pilaf

It was an Indian cooking hey day in my kitchen leading up to my vegan pot luck dinner. The clear winning recipe was this one, so I decided to post it next. It was also tweaked/inspired from a recipe from The Candle Cafe Cookbook, More than 150 Enlightened Recipes from New York's Renowned Vegan Restaurant.  

Traditionally, rice pilafs in Indian cuisine are made with white basmati rice. I thought I would take a risk and substitute in a brown basmati rice, which is much healthier. The results were fantastic!  And there's lot's more vegan Indian dishes to come in the days ahead.

Indian Brown Basmati Rice Pilaf
2 cups brown basmati rice
1 1/2 tsp brown or yellow mustard seeds
1 1/2 tsp whole cumin seeds
1 Tbsp coconut or safflower oil or cooking spray
3/4 cup diced onion
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 tsp whole cloves
1 Tbsp chopped or grated fresh ginger
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp turmeric
3 1/2 cups water
blanched cauliflower florets from 1/2 head of cauliflower
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup currants
1/2 cup toasted slivered almonds
2 Tbsp mirin (Japanese rice wine)

Rinse and drain rice to remove some of the starch.

Coat the bottom of a large pot with 1 Tbsp cooking oil or spray. Heat the on medium and add the mustard and cumin seeds.  Cook, stirring often, until they begin to pop. Add the oil, onion, garlic, cinnamon stick, cloves and ginger and saute over medium heat for about 4 minutes.

Add the rice, salt and turmeric and cook, stirring, until the rice is completely coated, about 1 minute.  Add the water, stir, cover and simmer over low heat about 45 minutes.

When the rice is tender add the blanched cauliflower, carrots, raisins, toasted almonds and mirin and stir well.  Keep warm until serving.


Liz said...

I have also been cooking a bunch of vegan Indian recipes of late. So much flavor! Last night I made red lentil dal and aloo gobi. Delish! I am going to try this one next. Thanks Wendy!

Wendy (Healthy Girl) said...

Thanks for the heads up on the Red Lentil Dal! I love red lentils and can't wait to put my own spin on that recipe. I know you are going to absolutely love this rice pilaf recipe. It's one of the best things I have ever made.

Jessica said...

Looks great and I am going to try it.

Another question for you and your followers:
I will be without a kitchen for a number of weeks in the near future. Any suggestions for how to eat with minimal cooking? Salads are easy, but can get know. I will have a microwave, toaster oven, maybe a hot plate, a fridge, very little access to water, and a coffee maker (thank god!). I hope to avoid pre-made frozen stuff, and spending too much on takeout. Go to it everyone!! Thanks!

Wendy (Healthy Girl) said...

Why avoid pre-made frozen stuff if you make it yourself? Soups? Stews? I would make a bunch of large batches and freeze them in single or double serving sizes. Also, the easiest thing to do is to toast up some ezekiel bread, schmear some hummus on it, and top it off with a nice slice of tomato and/or cucumber. That's definately something you can do in a toaster! Great along side your soups!

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