This is a no mess, all in one pot dish. Chop the veggies, add the masala and rice and cook on low heat! You may use the crock pot if you like. The key to a great pilaf is slow cooking. You can use it anyway you like, as a grand holiday breakfast, or for dinner.
What I used: Serves 4/5
Prep time: 30 minutes
4 eggs hard boiled and peeled
2 cups rice
1 cup ripe tomatoes diced
½ cup fresh/frozen peas
1 tsp fresh ginger and garlic chopped
1 cup onions diced
2 tsp cilantro finely chopped
A stick on fresh mint leaves
1 tsp Whole Garam masala (1/2 inch cinnamon, 2 cardamoms, 4 cloves, 1tsp fennel seeds)
1 tsp red chili powder
¼ tsp turmeric
2 tsp ghee/oil
Salt, to taste.
First, soak the raw rice in cold water. Set aside for 20 minutes. Add ghee into a medium pan. Over medium heat, add the whole garam masala, and fennel seeds.
Stir in whole mint leaves, chopped ginger, garlic, and onions. Once they turn soft, add chopped tomato. Stirring attentively, cook on medium-high till they are soft and pulpy. About 5-7 minutes.
Add in the peas and powders (chili powder, turmeric and salt). Drain the rice and add it in, roast the entire mixture for about 5-7 minutes.
To this mixture, pour 4 cups of hot water (1/2 cup less if you like your pilaf flaky, ½ cup more if you like it soft and mushy) and bring to a boil on high for 3 minutes.
Add in the lime juice, then, cover the simmering mixture on low heat for the next 10-12 minutes. You can add in the hard boiled eggs now, or later, just before you serve the cooked pilaf. Stir occasionally, very gently. All the liquid will evaporate. Test to see if the rice is cooked. If it is watery, let it stay on low heat for a few more minutes. Turn off the heat. Smear the top of the pilaf with 1tsp ghee just before it is served. Serve hot!