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Variety and health are the key when it comes to preparing food for Iftar. While our taste buds ask for tasty and a variety of food, the day-long fast requires healthy and nutritious food. The veg Yakhni pulao that we bring to you today is a combination of both.
There are people who want to include more of vegetables in their Iftar or are vegetarians by choice. Such people still deserve a tasty treat at the Iftar feast. This recipe of the vegetarian Yakhni Pulao is dedicated to them.
Yakhni pulao is usually cooked with some sort of a meat and is very flavourful. Yakhni translates to 'stock' (usually meat stock). The rice and meat are cooked not in water but in an aromatic broth made from stock.
However, since we are mentioning the recipe of the veg Yakhni pulao, veg stock can be used. You may also add paneer or tofu to the pulao to make it more interesting and nutritious.
Preparing Yakhni Pulao will demand a lot of care, attention and time from you. Without these, you will be left with a rice dish that has nothing Yakhni like in it. Don't let that stop you from attempting this recipe. All that effort will totally be worth it. So, let's check out the recipe below.
Preperation time- 30 Minutes
Cooking time- 45 minutes
For The Spice Bag
- Coriander seeds - 1 tbsp
- Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
- Fennel seeds - ½ tsp
- Ginger - 5-inch piece
- Garlic - 5 to 6 cloves
- For The Veg Stock/Yakhni
- Vegetables like potatoes, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, etc - 1½ cups
- Peas - ½ cup
- Water - 4 to 5 cups
- Salt - as per taste
For The Vegetable Yakhni Pulao
- Ghee - 2 tbsp
- Basmati rice - 1 cup (30 min pre-soaked)
- Bay leaves - 2 to 4
- Thinly sliced onion - 1 large
- Green cardamom - 2 to 4
- Black cardamom - 1
- Cinnamon - 1 inch
- Black pepper - 4 to 5
- Cloves - 5
- Strained curd - 1 tbsp
- Salt - as per taste
- For Garnishing
- Browned crisp onions - 1 cup
- Coriander leaves - 1 cup
- Mint leaves - ½ cup
- Fried cashews - 10 to 11
- Ghee - 1 tbsp
Take all the spices and tie them in a muslin cloth.
To Prepare The Stock
- Add all the ingredients of the yakhni into a pan along with the stock spice bag.
- Boil it all till the vegetables are half cooked.
- Take the bag, squeeze it and discard it.
- Use a strainer to separate the stock from the vegetables. Set the vegetables aside.
- Take the stock in a bowl. Any soup left after making the pulao can be used in other veg dishes.
To Prepare The Veg Yakhni Pulao
- Take a deep bottomed pan and add ghee to it.
- When the ghee is hot, add the whole spices into it.
- When the spices are fragrant, add the onions to it. Fry it till brown.
- Now, add the soaked basmati rice into it.
- Fry the rice for a minute.
- To this, add the vegetables kept aside. Mix thoroughly till they are well mixed.
- Now, add the stock and salt. Remember that we have salt in the stock as well. So, adjust the salt accordingly.
- Add the curd and combine everything well.
- Use a tight lid to cover.
- Cook the pulao on medium flame for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Check if the rice is cooked. If not, add some warmed stock and cook for an extra of 5 minutes.
- When done, garnish the pulao with the coriander and mint leaves, cashews and brown onions.
- Drizzle around 1 tbsp of ghee over the pulao.
- Serve hot with raita or a gravy.