Monday 13 February 2012

Zarda Pulao

Vineet is confused. He is contemplating between salt & sugar. No, actually about his travel plans. To be or not to be, that is the question. 

An IT honcho based out of Mexico, Vinit reached there by his sheer passion for work & an infectious attitude. I first met Vinit in the office when there was yet another file I could not open. He came to the training room, clicked magic, gave me the it-was-nothing smile & walked away. I felt like Zarda Pulao. Went saffron in the face(the fair ones go red.)

The other day when Vinit was making fried rice, he took out to taste it. It tasted sweet. He added salt. Sweeter! He had kept sugar in the salt pot! Nishi consoled him by saying she had done the reverse to the icing sugar. She had saltified it . In the demo for my new microwave, the chef demonstrated how to bake a cake. In 3 minutes flat, the cake was baked! Fluffy, crunchy. CRUNCHY cake? I had given her rice powder instead of maida. We all have our stories :)

Hey, next time make the rice, sweet.Deliberately. Scintillating taste & easy breezy lemon squeezy to make. Nahi nahi lemon nahi use karna hai ! Recipe sun lo.

Without debating whether Zarda Pulao is an Indian or Moghal dish, let's just enjoy it!

We need:
1. Long Grained Rice -1cup [serves 3]
2. Sugar- 1 cup
3. Water- 1.5 cups
4. Milk- 1/2 cup
5. Saffron(Kesar)- 1pinch
6. Yellow Food Colour- 1/2tsp
7. Dry Fruits(Cashewnut, raisins, dry coconut slices)- 1/2 cup
8. Whole Garam Masala(cardamom, cinnamon, cloves)- for flavour
9. Salt-1/2tsp
10. Ghee- 1/2cup

1. Soak rice for 30 mins. Strain & keep to dry.

2. Soak saffron in milk till other steps happen.

3. Heat the ghee. Toss in the whole garam masala. Fry for 30 secs. 

4.  Fry the dry fruits for a min till cashew & coconut slices  become slight golden brown & raisins puff.

5. Add the soaked & dried Basmati rice & fry for 5 mins on medium heat.
   The rice should not change colour.

6. Warm the milk with the saffron(kesar).
    This brings out the kesar flavour beautifully.

7. Add the food colour to the warm kesar milk. 
    Stir in well so no lumps form.

Tip: Use egg yellow food colour. Not saffron.

8. Add water, sugar, salt & the milk to the rice. 
    Stir well. Pressure cook till one whistle. 


Let Zarda Pulao sit for 10 mins before serving.
Serve it with boondi raita or plain. It is a rich dish & an instant hit with connoisseurs of food. 

Make this for your Guadalajara gang, Vinit. It will be a lip-smacking, finger-licking experience & they will go away saying muchas gracias for the delicacy.