Friday, 7 October 2016

The Laziest Lamb Pulao.

Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu!

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

You guys, can you feel the days getting shorter?

I definitely can. Today has been super busy, as always, and it's still not over yet. I made a classic Pakistani dessert (recipe coming!) and then, marinaded an entire roast chicken. I know to some of you that may seem nothing but for me, it was terrible. I'm so bad at touching raw whole chickens. It gives me the shivers especially since our neighbours have decided to keep a whole flock of chickens in their back garden. I'm telling you, the hens know when I'm cooking chicken because their clucking and squawking gets louder!


Anyway, after the chicken, I tackled one of my autumn vegetable pet-hates: the butternut squash. Sure, they look all cute and autumnal in your vegetable basket along with the sweet potato and cauliflower, but please tell me you also hate peeling them? I definitely do and so today, I wore gloves whilst doing so. Then, I needed to grate them (we're making rostis for dinner - update: dinner was delicious) so started off with the box grater before giving up and crying out for the food processor. I've never loved that processor so much.

On to today's recipe. It's for the laziest lamb pulao and is just what is needed for busy, cold days like today. It's all the pulao flavour without any of the faff. One of my favourite comfort foods is my Mother's pulao, fresh out of the pot. There is nothing more comforting than the smell of the onions getting to their dark brown perfection. You can hear them sizzling before water is thrown in and the lid is slammed on to let them de-glaze. Once the rice, stock and meat are in, the wait begins. No one is allowed to touch the lid until Mother says so. According to her, the dum or steam is the most crucial part of any pulao along of course with the yakhni - the stock.

For my lazy version, we're foregoing the stock and using leftover curry. I know you've probably got some in the fridge after your last curry night. This pulao dish is the best thing to make with leftover, cold curry. We keep my Mother and other pulao purists happy by getting our onions to the dark brown perfection that give the rice its signature colour and taste. After they're de-glazed, in goes the curry. It is stir-fried to wake it up before water, rice, peas (if you want) and salt are added. The crucial steam is timed to Mother's instructions and only an hour after you started, you'll have the laziest lamb pulao. And in my experience, no one will even notice that it's not the real deal. 

Pulao, previously: lamb pulao // chickpea pulao // vegetable pulao // lamb and potato akhni // chicken pulao // pea pulao // quick pilau rice

A Simple List of Ingredients:
1. Basmati Rice
2. Vegetable Oil
3. Onions
4. Cumin Seeds
5. Water
6. Leftover Curry
7. Frozen Peas (optional)
8. Salt

Bismillah, let's begin!


Let's begin by washing and soaking our rice. Take 450g Basmati Rice.


Rinse the rice in a few changes of water until the water runs clear. Soak the rice in enough water to cover until ready to use.


Next, to cook the pulao. Take a large, wide pan with high sides and place over a medium heat. Drizzle in a few tablespoons of Vegetable Oil.


Take 2 large Onions.


And, peel and dice them.


Once the oil is hot, add in the diced onions.


Next, cumin seeds which always go so well with lamb.


Add in 2 teaspoons Cumin Seeds.


Give everything a good stir.


If things seem like a little dry or start to stick, drizzle in more oil.


Fry the onions, stirring every now and then, until ...


... the onions are a deep golden brown. These onions are what will give our pulao their signature colour, taste and smell.


Next, we're going to de-glaze our pan with a little water. Turn the heat right down and pour in 140ml Water.


Cover immediately with a lid and leave covered for 1 minute.


Once you can hear that the steam has died down ...


... uncover.


Turn the heat up and stir well for a minute or two.


Next, the curry. I used 700g Leftover Lamb Curry. A chicken or vegetarian would also work well here.


Add in the curry.


Give everything a good stir and stir-fry for a few minutes to wake everything up.


Next, pour in 950ml Water.


Stir in the water.


And, bring to the boil.


Next, I added in peas. You could leave them out, if you wish. Potatoes, frozen peas or chickpeas would be good here.


I added in 200g Frozen Peas.


Stir in and bring back to the boil.


Next, drain the water out of the rice.


Add in the rice.


Gently stir in the rice and bring to the boil again.


Meanwhile, taste the liquid for seasoning. For a pulao, the liquid should be saltier than normal.


I added in 2 teaspoons Salt.


Another gentle stir ...


... and let the rice boil until you see bubbles on the surface - around 2 minutes.


It's time to steam the rice. Cover the pan with a lid.


Let the steam build over a high heat for 1 minute. Then, turn the heat right down and steam for 20 minutes. You can place a heavy object on to the lid to help keep the steam in.


Once the time is up ...


... uncover the pan. The rice should be cooked and the water should all have been absorbed.


Gently fluff up the rice.


Serve hot for the most delicious cold day dinner.


On the side, a really simple salad.


And, green yoghurt chutney.


Enjoy!

Full Written Recipe:


The Laziest Lamb Pulao.

Prep Time: About 10 minutes.
Cook Time: About 50 minutes.
Serves: About 4-6 people.

Ingredients
450g Basmati Rice
Few tablespoons of Vegetable Oil
2 large Onions, peeled and diced
2 teaspoon Cumin Seeds
140ml Water, to de-glaze the onions
700g Leftover Lamb Curry
950ml Water, to steam the rice
200g Frozen Peas
2 teaspoons Salt (or to taste)

Method

Rinse and soak the rice. Rinse the rice in a few changes of water until the water runs clear. Soak the rice in enough water to cover until ready to use.

Brown the onions. Take a large, wide pan with high sides and place over a medium heat. Add the oil and once hot, add in the diced onions and cumin seeds. Fry, stirring every now and then, until the onions are a deep golden brown. Add more oil, if the onions stick.

De-glaze the pan. With the lid ready and the heat turned right down, pour in 140ml water. Cover immediately and leave covered for 1 minute. Uncover and turn the heat up. Stir well and stir-fry for a minute or two.

The curry! Add in the lamb curry and stir-fry for a few minutes to wake everything up. Then, pour in 950ml water, stir and bring to the boil.

The peas and the rice! Once the water is boiling, throw in the peas. Stir and boil again. Drain the rice and add to the pan.
Bring to the boil again and taste the liquid for seasoning. It should be saltier than normal – we added in 2 teaspoons salt, at this point.
Gently stir in the salt and let the rice boil until you see bubbles on the surface – around 2 minutes.

Time to steam! Cover with a lid and let the steam build over a high heat for 1 minute. Then, turn the heat right down and steam for 20 minutes. You can place a heavy object onto the lid to help keep the steam in.

Time to eat! Uncover and gently fluff up the rice. Serve hot with your favourite yoghurt chutney and salad. Enjoy!

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Keep me in your duas, and enjoy your pulao,

Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu!

4 comments

  1. AOA.... love your recipies ... so pleased it's all measured and written clearly!! x thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wa alaikumus salaam! So glad you like them! :)

      Delete
  2. Salam, which curry did you use for this is it one on your blog, thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We used a simple lamb masala curry. Any of the blog ones will do.

      Delete

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