Yes, when you read the entire recipe below you might think how is this a subtle spiced rice if you are using so many spices. I know I know! But when I say subtle the spiciness comes from the warm spices used but no turmeric or red chilli powder is used in this dish. Vegetable Pulao or Vegetable Pilaf is one of my favorite quick fix dishes.
I have a packet of frozen mixed veggies in my freezer always and ofcourse huge packing of basmati rice always. If you join me for a meal unannounced you will get fed vegetable pulao mostly 😉
Vegetable Pulao or Pilaf comes from the Persian/Mughal influence into Indian cuisine. There are different versions of this recipe with and without dry fruits as well but I like mine rather simple thus you won’t find any of them used here.
After cooking the rice and just before serving I garnish it with mix herbs like fresh coriander and mint leaves. I love the fragrance of fresh herbs. Why don’t you give this recipe a try and let me know.
Wash the rice well for 5 mins till you see clear water while washing. Soak the rice while prepping the vegetables for 10 - 15 mins in water.
Prep the vegetables along with the spices. You can use a Dutch oven, large sauce pan or even pressure cooker to make pulao.
In a pan or cooker, add the ghee and oil and warm it up before adding the spices (cumin seeds, cinnamon stick, star anise, clove, cardamom, bay leaf). Saute them for 1 min on medium flame before adding the vegetables.
Add the vegetables and saute them on medium to high flame for 5 mins and then add the washed and soaked basmati rice without the water. Add salt at this stage. Mix everything well. Don't mix everything too vigorously rather softly.
Add 2 to 3 cups of water, enough to submerge all the rice along with the veggies (just a little above). Bring it to a good boil and then lower the heat. and let it cook under a cover for 7-8 more mins. And then turn off the heat and let it continue cooking under the cover with the circulating steam. After 5 mins remove the cover and using a fork run through the pulao. Don't mix everything again too vigorously (else you will break the long grain rice). You don't need to add any more spices to this as this dish is often paired with other curries which are spicy enough. I like my pulao with warm spices but without red chilli and turmeric powder.