“From the SCCC Kitchen” offers tastes from Schenectady County Community College’s culinary arts program. Today, educational aide Lakshmi Seetharaman offers a fast way to cook rice and adds green peas in the process — Jeera Pulav.
Rice is a simple dish. Lakshmi Seetharaman has a simple way to cook it.
“This is a very basic, classic Indian rice dish,” she said. “It’s done in 20, 25 minutes so it’s quick and easy and tasty at the same time.”
Colorful, too. The finished product includes hints of green from the peas and tan color from the cashews.
Jeera Pulav with Green Peas (cumin pilaf)
1 cup basmati rice
2 to 3 tablespoons ghee (clarified butter)
1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
1 cardamom pod
5 or 6 whole cashews
1⁄2 cup green peas
1 bay leaf
Salt, to taste
Soak basmati rice in water — just enough to cover the rice — for 45 minutes. Wash and drain the rice in a colander and set aside.
Add ghee to a heated pot. After the ghee heats up, add cumin seeds, cardamom and clove. Next, fry the cashew nuts until golden brown. The drained rice is mixed with the green peas and ghee until all the rice is coated.
The rice is boiled with 11⁄4 cups of water. Salt is added to taste; a bay leaf is also added. When the water is boiling, reduce the heat to simmer and cover the rice with a lid. Cook the rice for 20 minutes or until done, discard bay leaf. Rice is best paired with vegetable or chicken curry.