|½ teaspoon||Saffron threads; (see NOTE)|
|1 cup||Basmati rice|
|2 ounces||Unsalted butter; (or Indian "ghee" if you can get it)|
|4||Whole cardamom pods|
|1||1-in stick cinnamon|
|¼ teaspoon||Yellow food coloring|
|½ ounce||Blanched slivered almonds|
|1 tablespoon||Golden raisins; (sultanas)|
|3½ ounce||Sugar; (or to taste)|
Yesterday evening, with a friend coming over for dinner, I broke out Madhur Jaffrey's "Indian Cooking" and whipped up a dinnerful of subcontinental dishes, which I thought I'd share with the list. All three recipes derive from that one book, which I can't recommend highly enough as a good overview of all the various aspects of Indian food. None of these dishes are outrageously (even notably) hot, but could be jacked up however you like. Anyway, here's what we had last night: Prep time: 3 hours with saffron milk; about 1½ hours otherwise Cooking time: about 45 minutes
Heat a small, heavy frying pan or saucepan over medium heat till very hot.
Add saffron threads and toast 1-2 minutes, until the threads have darkened.
Remove threads from pan and crumble into milk. Set aside and refrigerate up to 3 hours.
Wash the rice in several changes of water and drain. Soak for 30 minutes in 1 pint of water and drain for another 20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
In a large frying pan, melt the butter or ghee over medium heat. Add the cardamom seeds and cinnamon and stir about for 1 minute. Add the rice and saute, turning heat down if necessary, 3 minutes. At this point add 1 pint water and the yellow food coloring. Stir, cooking at medium heat, until the rice has absorbed the liquid. Transfer rice to a covered ovenproof dish and add the saffron milk, almonds, raisins and sugar. Mix well, then bake in 300-degree oven for 30 minutes. (I just put it in the same oven as the chicken at 350 for about 5 fewer minutes- worked fine.) Remove the whole spices from the rice before serving.
NOTE: If you don't have saffron threads or are on a budget, eliminate the saffron and the milk, and simply increase the yellow food coloring to 1 tsp.)
Posted to CHILE-HEADS DIGEST by "Jonathan T. Smillie" <jsmillie@...> on Oct 19, 1998, converted by MM_Buster v2.0l.
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