Saturday evenings are for Holy Mass and Dosa, that’s been our tradition for quite some time. We go to the same restaurant, order the same thing (we hardly ever change our order) every week. I’ve lost the count of Plain Dosas I’ve eaten from there. These days the moment they see me, they place the order for Plain Dosa ;)
Recently, some of our friends joined us for Dosa on a Saturday evening. They have been to this place, only once before and were not very familiar it. They asked for our suggestion for what to order and since we’ve been eating almost the same thing for ages, we were not of much help.
Finally our friend decided on Keema Paratha and he was a bit curious about what the veg keema consisted of. I guessed that it maybe soya mince or veg mince or something like that.
Anyways, he said he wanted to have some side dish to go with that and asked the expert opinion of our server. The server stated that it came with raitha & you wouldn’t need a side dish for that. So, we waited for our order…
All our orders came except Keema Paratha. Since none of us had the veg keema paratha before & extra time being taken for it, it spiked our curiosity.
Finally, the server came and placed a dish on our table. All of us looked puzzled and said we didn't order any Veg Korma, we ordered Keema Paratha. I still can't get over the expression on our friend’s face when the waiter said the dish was in fact “Keema Paratha” and not Veg Korma!!!
Confused, lost and shocked were some of the expressions on our friend’s face. Honestly, his expressions were very apt, considering the fact that the so called “keema paratha” placed in front of us looked like a Veg Korma or veg stir fry (or a combination of both), with chunky pieces of carrot, potato, beans, cauliflower.
We all stopped eating and started staring at that Keema Paratha, like it’s about to detonate in a few minutes or something like that. We were all under shock and started looking at it trying to figure out where was the “paratha” in it. The thing is, Paratha was torn into pieces and added to a Veg Korma or Stir Fry.
Our friend who ordered it, couldn't bring himself to even taste it. Finally I tasted it and surprisingly, it tasted ok. There was some kinda masala flavour and if you dig deep, you would get some Paratha pieces.
Ok, what all this got to do with our recipe? Well, when you think about a particular food, you’ve a certain image in your mind and you may associate a certain flavour or taste with that food, right?
So, now coming to our recipe of the day, Green Peas Pulao, I had a very particular image associated with this Pulao. Thanks to all the Pressure cooker advertisements during my childhood days, the stock image of Green Peas Pulao in my mind is like this: super white colour long grain Basmati rice, where each grain is not touching the other and is dotted with green peas which looks like tiny green pearls with the steam swirling up in each spoonful.
Having grown up eating Matta Rice (brown rice) this pressure cooker advertisement showcasing this super white Basmati rice looked like some delicacy. But let me ask you something, my Basmati rice doesn't look super white not even white for that matter, it always has a faded white colour. The Basmati rice in advertisements always look like they’ve been cooked in Ujala (super whitener) instead of water!
Anyways, back to our recipe… though my Green Peas Pulao doesn't look anything like the one in advertisements, it is good! It’s packed with flavour and it’s super easy and simple to make. I’ve used short grain rice (Jeerakashala rice) but you can also use Basmati.
I think this is a rice dish that goes well with almost all kinda side dishes, be it veg, non veg, dry or gravy. Do try it and tell me, if you ended up with super white rice or faded white rice like me ;)
Here is the recipe…
Heat ghee in a wide and deep pan. Add whole spices (cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, bay leaf & cumin). Fry for a min.Add chopped onion and cook till it becomes soft, no need to brown…
- 1 cup Rice (I've used Jeerakashala / Kaima rice, you can use Basmati rice too)
- 3 Cardamom (crushed)
- 1 medium piece Cinnamon
- 2 Cloves
- 1-2 Bay leaf
- 1/4 tsp Cumin
- 1 medium Onion (chopped)
- 1 tbsp Crushed ginger & garlic (each)
- 2 Green chilli (crushed)
- 2/3 cup Peas (I used frozen peas)
- 1 tbsp Lemon juice
- 2 tbsp Chopped coriander & mint leaves (each)
- 1 3/4 cups Water
- 1-2 tbsp Ghee
- Heat ghee in a wide and deep pan.
- Add whole spices (cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, bay leaf & cumin). Fry for a min.
- Add chopped onion and cook till it becomes soft, no need to brown.
- Add crushed ginger, garlic & green chilli. Cook for 2-3 mins.
- Add peas and chopped mint & coriander leaves, salt & lemon juice. Cook for 2-3 mins.
- Add washed & drained rice. Stir on lowest flame for 3-4 mins.
- Add water & bring it to boil. Let it simmer for 7-8 mins, or until the water is dried completely and rice is cooked.
- Gently fluff the rice with a fork.
- Serve hot with your choice of side dish