We don't eat plain rice with our curries any more, we eat Spiced Rice. This is another quick and easy recipe that you only need the one pot for. Our cupboard is full of a wide range of spices. When spices are added to something plain, like rice, it makes your taste buds dance.
The spices used in this recipe all have a very strong flavour and when you smell them, it reminds me of a Christmas lunch mixed with a licorice shop.
This recipe requires two bay leaves. I personally find fresh bay leaves have a lot more flavour in them than the dried leaves. It can sometimes be hard to find fresh bay leaves around, so why not plant a grow a bay tree? We have done just that. I have bought mum her very own bay tree and in the past three years she has had it, it has tripled in size. Yes it may only be about 30cm tall and has a way to go before becoming a large tree, but it has so many usable leaves on it already.
What you need:
225g basmati rice
30g ghee OR butter
5 green cardamom pods, bruised
1/2 cinnamon stick
1 tsp fennel seeds
1/2 tsp black mustard seeds
2 bay leaves
salt and pepper to taste
1) Melt the ghee in a large saucepan with a tight-fitting lid over a medium-high heat. Add the spices and bay leaves and stir for 30 seconds. Stir the rice into the ghee and spices so the grains are coated with ghee. Stir in the water, salt and pepper and bring to the boil.
2) Reduce the heat to as low as possible and cover the saucepan with the lid. Simmer, without lifting the lid, for 8-10 minutes, until the grains are tender and all the liquid is absorbed.
3) Turn off the heat and use 2 forks to fluff up the rice. Re-cover the saucepan and leave to stand for 5 minutes