455 g basmati rice
5 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons mustard seeds
2 teaspoons urad dhal (small dried split peas)
1 handful curry leaves
rind and juice of 2 lemons
1 bunch fresh coriander, chopped
freshly ground black pepper
I've always wanted to know how Indian and Thai chefs make tasty rice. This is a great way to liven up plain rice but feel free to take it a step further by adding turmeric, like my Indian friend Das. Or hot it up with a little chilli powder. You can also fry some broken nuts, scramble in some eggs, try any ideas or flavours that you think are apt.
Throw the rice into boiling water, cook for 10 minutes and drain.
Heat the oil in a small frying pan, over a medium heat. Add the mustard seeds and as they begin to pop add the urad dhal, curry leaves and strips of lemon rind (remove these with a vegetable peeler). Leave to cook for 1 minute until the urad dhal and lemon peel are lightly coloured.
Add the drained steaming rice to a bowl and pour over the cooked spices, lemon juice and chopped coriander. Season to taste. Serve with a good curry.
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This zesty, fragrant rice is the business with a curry – it's great spiced up with extra chilli too
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