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Everyone  has their own version of pilaf or pulao. My mum prepares more than five types of pilaf. This version is the easier and quicker. I hate the pilaf which is prepared just by mixing stir fried vegetables with cooked basmati rice. I like to cook vegetables along with rice and spices and I love the aroma of it.

Vegetable Pilaf with cucumber and tomato raita

Vegetable Pilaf with cucumber and tomato raita

Serves two persons

Ingredients

For vegetable pilaf

1 cup basmati rice

1/2 cup carrot (cut in long 1 inch pieces)

1/2 cup peas

1/2 cup cauliflower

1/2 cup green beans(cut in small pieces)

1/4 cup mint leaves

3-5 green chilllies (cut length wise)

1 tbsp ginger paste, 1 tsp garlic paste

5 cashews, 8 raisins

hole spices: 2 cardamom pods, 4 cloves, 1 bay leaf, 2 cinnamon sticks, 5 peppercorns, 2 star anise, 1 tbsp cumin

salt

1/2 lemon juice

1 tbsp oil, 1 tsp ghee or butter

For cucumber and tomato raita

1 small cucumber (chopped)

1 medium tomato (chopped)

2 tbsp coriander(chopped)

salt

1 tsp chaat masala

1/2 tsp sugar

Procedure

For vegetable pilaf

Vegetable Pilaf with cucumber and tomato raita

Vegetable Pilaf with cucumber and tomato raita

  • Wash and soak the basmati rice for 20 minutes.
  • Take a deep vessel or pressure cooker( yes ,you heard it right. The rice grains wont go mushy in pressure cooker). Heat oil and ghee(or butter) in it. Do not burnt any whole spices. Keep heat to minimum. Put bay leaf and cashew nuts. Half a minute later, add all the whole spices. Add ginger paste,garlic paste and mint leaves. Mix it and cook for a minute. Add the vegetables and mix it. Add salt to it. Mix well. 
  • Drain the water from rice and add rice to spices and vegetables. Add raisins. Add 2 cups of water and juice of half lemon. Allow it cook for 2 whistles or close the lid of deep vessel and cook it for next 8-10 minutes on medium heat.
  • Allow the pressure cooker to rest till the pressure is released completely or in case of using vessel, press the rice grain and if it is soft, put off the heat and allow it to rest for next 10 minutes. Now you can mix your pilaf gently without breaking grains.
  • Serve it hot with lemon and onion and raita.

Tip: You can cottage cheese-paneer and other vegetables like sweet corn, potato or even chickpeas.

Vegetable Pilaf with cucumber and tomato raita

Vegetable Pilaf with cucumber and tomato raita

For cucumber and tomato raita

  • Beat the yogurt gently and combine chopped cucumber, tomato, coriander ,salt ,sugar and chaat masala and mix it.
  • Serve chilled or at room temperature.
Vegetable Pilaf with cucumber and tomato raita

Vegetable Pilaf with cucumber and tomato raita

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