Pakistani Chickpea & Rice Pilaf – Chana Pulao
From Curry Cuisine
Rice-soaking time: 1-2 hours
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total Cooking Time: 45-80 minutes
Serves 4-6 (Ruth’s note: I used brown basmati which is why there’s such a time discrepancy and less rice than called for with lots of leftovers – my quantities are in brackets)
1 ¼ lb/500g basmati rice (I used 1 cup brown long grain rice)
½ cup sunflower oil (I used 2 tbsp grape seed oil)
1 large onion, very thinly sliced
1 tsp fresh gingerroot, thinly sliced and slivered
3 cinnamon sticks (I used only 2 since I used much less rice)
1 tsp black peppercorns
1 tsp cumin seeds
3 cardamom pods (I used 2)
Salt to taste
4oz/115g dried chickpeas, soaked overnight & cooked until tender or (my choice) 1 tin (14oz/400g) chickpeas, drained
Fried Brown Onion Garnish: (for my smaller dish, I just set some of the fried onion slices from the recipe aside for garnish)
2 tbsp sunflower oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced
Thoroughly wash rice in cold running water. Soak in a bowl with enough water to cover for at least one hour. Drain.
1. Heat the oil over medium high heat, in a medium to large saucepan, add the onions and fry until golden brown. ( I set some aside for garnish) Add the ginger, spices and salt to taste stir for a minute or until you can smell the wonderful aromas. Add 3 cups of water (I only added 2 cups because I only used 1 cup of rice) and bring to a boil. Add the soaked, drained rice, chickpeas and cover the pot. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 15 minutes (the rice should be 90 per cent cooked – brown rice takes a little longer).
2. Dampen a clean, thick dishtowel with water. Remove the lid from the saucepan. Cover with cloth and put the lid back on tightly. Set the heat to very low. Cook for 25-30 minutes. (If you’re using brown rice, it might need a little more time).
I served it with Pakistani Lamb & Tomato Curry.