18 October, 2006

Jeera(Cumin) Rice

Jeera is the second most important spice in Indian cuisine (after coriander). It was first cultivated in Ancient Egypt and the Romans used it as we use pepper.
In Indian cuisine, cumin is an important ingredient in most curries, pilau rice and certain breads. When mixed with ground coriander, it forms the basis of most curry powders and masalas. Cumin is a spice that can be used whole just as it can be used ground and often a mixture of both forms is required in several recipes. The seeds are also used in snacks and appetisers and when dry roasted, cumin is an essential flavouring in the Gujarati drink lassi.
Here is the simple recipe to cook Jeera Rice. I often prepare it with some curry as side dish.

Jeera Rice served with Mushroom Masala

2 Cups Basmati Rice
2 Tbsp Ghee
1½ Tbsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds
½ Cup Milk (optional)
1 inch Cinnamon Stick
3 Cloves
3 Green Cardamom
1 Bay Leaf
Salt to taste

Jeera Rice

Soak rice in water for half an hour and drain.
Heat ghee in pressure cooker and add cinnamon stick, bay leaf, cloves and green cardamom and saute it for a minute. Add jeera or cumin seeds to the spices.
Fry till jeera starts sizzle and then add washed rice.
Fry rice for about 2-3 minutes till it’s covered with ghee.
Add salt, milk and 3 and half cups of water and mix well.
Close the lid and pressure cook rice for about 10-15 minutes.
Serve hot jeera rice with any curry of your choice.

Jeera Rice

Did you know?
Cumin is said to keep lovers faithful and was often used in love potions. It has been used as a condiment in England since the 13th century and was a taxable import into London from 1419. It has also been used by Ayurvedic practitioners.

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