- August 2010
- Serves 4
- Takes 10 min to make, 20 min to cook
This is a quick version of the classic Indian recipe, Biryani rice. Serve it as an accompaniment to a curry or Goan-style stuffed mackerel.
- 8.2g (2.4g saturated)
- 42.5g (5.5g sugar)
- Vegetable oil, for shallow frying
- 175g large shallots, thinly sliced
- Pinch of saffron strands
- 300g basmati rice
- 25g ghee or butter
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 8 cardamom pods, lightly bruised
- 8 cloves
- 2 x 5cm cinnamon sticks
- 2 fresh bay leaves
- 50g sultanas
Pour enough vegetable oil to come 1cm up the sides of a large frying pan. Place over a medium-high heat and fry the shallot, stirring occasionally, until crisp and richly golden. Remove with a slotted spoon onto a tray lined with kitchen paper, sprinkle with salt, then leave to cool and crispen.
Grind the saffron to a powder in a pestle and mortar. Add 1 tbsp hot water and set aside. Put the rice into a bowl, cover with cold water and run the grains through your fingers until the water turns milky. Pour away the water and repeat 2-3 times until the water runs almost clear. Drain well.
Melt the ghee or butter in a medium-sized pan over a medium-high heat. Add the cumin seeds, cardamom pods, cloves, cinnamon, bay leaves and sultanas and leave to sizzle for a few seconds. Stir in the rice, 500ml boiling water and 1 tsp salt. Bring to the boil, stir once, cover, reduce the heat to low and leave to cook for 10 minutes. Uncover to let the steam escape, quickly drizzle over the saffron water, re-cover and set aside for 5 minutes.
Uncover the rice and gently fluff up with a fork. Fork through the crisp-fried shallots and serve.
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