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The cooks of India and Pakistan take their rice seriously. It is in these regions that the humble grain is transformed into some of southern Asia's most delicious dishes, such as biryani, a richly perfumed combination of rice, vegetables and sometimes fruits, nuts and meats. Our vegetarian version features potato, carrots and peas.
- For Rice:
- 1 1/2 cups rice, preferably basmati rice, rinsed
- For Vegetables:
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon cooking oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 baking potato (about 1/2 pound), peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 carrots, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 cups water
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 10-ounce package frozen peas, defrosted
- 1/4 cup plain yogurt
- 1 jalapeno chili, seeds and ribs removed, minced
- 1 tomato, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1/2 cup cilantro leaves
FOR RICE: Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Stir in the rice and boil until just done, about 10 minutes. Drain the rice, return to the pot, and cover to keep warm.
FOR VEGETABLES: Meanwhile, in a large frying pan, melt the butter with the oil over moderately low heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the cumin, turmeric, curry powder and cayenne and cook, stirring, for 1 minute longer. Add the potato, carrots, water and salt. Increase the heat to moderately high and simmer until the vegetables are tender and no liquid remains in the pan, about 10 minutes.
TO SERVE: Stir the peas into the other vegetables and remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the yogurt and rice and serve topped with the jalapeno, tomato and cilantro.
Tip: WINE RECOMMENDATION:
The sweet, floral perfume of basmati rice calls to mind the similar aromas of Vouvray. A demi-sec will strike just the right balance with the slight heat of the biryani.
Recipe reprinted by permission of Food and Wine. All rights reserved.
nutrition information per serving
468 calories; 8g total fat; 9mg cholesterol; 991mg sodium; 88g carbohydrates; 8g fiber; 13g protein
These nutrition facts are calculated according to the ingredients listed in this recipe. Any substitutions will change these facts. Although we strive for accuracy, please note that food manufacturers occasionally change their food formulas, which could affect the calculations as shown.
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