Vegetable pulao is a medley of colourful vegetables with rice and some basic spices. It can be paired with different curries or enjoyed as it is with some raita. Vegetable pulao makes for a wholesome and healthy meal, especially when you have a shortage of time in your hands. It also makes for a great lunch box idea.
This vegetable pulao can be made in a single vessel or pot. You can also use the pressure cooker and cook it for one whistle. The amount of time it takes to took in a pot is almost the same as a pressure cooker. Soaking the rice in advance helps to cook it faster, and makes it fluffy and light.
Making the Perfectly Fluffy Rice
For this pulao, find yourself the best quality long grained basmati rice. Wash the rice thoroughly with water till its clear. Next, soak it for exactly 30 minutes in room temperature water. After that, strain the water and keep the rice as dry as possible. I used a sieve to release the water and keep it undisturbed. Do not soak for more than 30 minutes as the rice will become too wet and will cook very fast, and end up sticking to each other. Soaking for longer duration might also break the rice. Soaking is an essential pre-requisite to get the perfectly fluffy rice that you see in this egg pulao.
Correct water quantities
Next is the perfect amount of water for the rice to cook. I have added the exact measurements for this recipe, but the usual and easy rule to follow is – For every cup of rice that you use, use half cup more water than that. For example, if you use 1 cup of rice, use 1.5 cups of water. If you use 2 cups of rice, use 2.5 cups of water. And the water should always be hot if you’re making the rice in a pot. Otherwise, the temperature difference might ruin the rice. This rule applies only if you soak the rice for 30 minutes before cooking it.
Low flame and rest
Lastly, perfectly fluffy rice is always cooked in low flame. If you’re making rice in a pot, make sure you cover and cook it in the lowest flame possible. And once its done, do not serve immediately. Turn off the gas and let it rest for another 10-15 minutes. This will give the perfect edge to the rice and make it bloom to its best ability.
Let’s take a look at the recipe.
Preparation time – 30 minutes
Cook time – 30 minutes
Serves – 3
- 1 cup rice
- 2 tbsp ghee
- 1 tbsp ghee for garnish
- 2 medium onions
- 3 cardamoms
- 1 inch cinnamon stick
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 star anise
- 3 cloves
- 8 peppercorns
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 slit green chillies (add more if you want it extra spicy)
- 1 tsp garlic paste
- 1 tbsp ginger paste
- 1 cup cauliflower florets
- 1/2 cup carrots
- 1/3 cup green beans
- 1/2 cup potatoes
- 1/4 cup green peas
- 1/2 cup soaked soya chunks
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- 1 tbsp coriander powder
- 1.5 tbsp salt (or adjust as per taste)
- 1.5 cups hot water
- 10-12 fresh mint leaves for garnish
- Wash the rice thoroughly till water comes clear. Soak the rice for 30 minutes.
- Heat ghee in a pan. Once hot, temper with cumin seeds, bay leaf, star anise, cloves, peppercorns, cinnamon stick, cardamoms and slit green chillies. Saute for a few seconds till they release their aroma.
- Add the finely chopped onions. Saute for a few minutes till they turn translucent. We do not want to turn them brown.
- Once the onions are translucent, add the ginger and garlic paste. Saute on medium flame till the raw aromas disappear.
- Add the hardy vegetables first – cauliflower florets, carrots and potatoes.
- Fry the vegetables with the rest of the ingredients for a few minutes.
- Add the peas and the soaked soya bean nuggets. They add a lot of flavour. Mix the well with the rest of the ingredients.
- Season with salt, cumin powder and coriander powder.
- Once everything is well combined, add the soaked rice and gently mix it with the rest of the ingredients. Be gentle as you do not want to break any grains.
- Pour hot water, give everything a gentle mix and cover and cook on low flame for 30 minutes.
- Once done, take flame off and let it rest for atleast 15 more minutes.
- Garnish with some fresh mint leaves and a generous drizzle of ghee.
- Serve hot with some raita or curry of your choice.
Hope you try out this one pot vegetable pulao in your own kitchen.