In a regular food menu plain rice is served with either some dal (lentils), pulses or curry. However sometimes for a change and a little twist we prepare Jeera rice, also known as Jeera pulav. Jeera rice is a simple preparation of cumin flavored rice fried with some clarified butter (ghee) and whole garam masala. It is the simplest and easiest of all rice dishes and yet it gives a restaurant style look and feel. Instead of regular rice (sona masuri) we use long grain Basmati rice. Just like plain rice, Jeera rice can also be served with any dal or curry, however it goes best with Dal fry or Dal Tadka. Dal Fry and Jeera Rice are made for each other and I always make Dal fry when making Jeera rice. So lets proceed step by step.
Jeera rice can be cooked in many different ways. Rice can be boiled first and seasoned with cumin seeds and whole garam masala. If you want the Jeera rice to be done quickly you can also cook it in a pressure cooker.
However the way I like to cook Jeera rice is to soak the rice first, temper the spices and cook the rice in the tempering by adding water. This way the rice absorbs some water while soaking so requires less water for cooking and it is easier to separate the rice grains. It takes a little longer, but gives a nicer look :)
Take about one cup of long grain basmati rice.
Wash it 3-4 times with water and soak it for 30 minutes and drain.
In a deep bottom pan or kadai heat ghee/clarified butter.
Add bay leaf, cloves, curry leaves, cumin seeds and cinnamon stick.
After the cumin seeds crackle add rice and salt to taste.
Mix all the ingredients well so that each basmati rice grain is well coated with ghee.
Add 2 cups water. Since we have already soaked the rice 2 cups of water is sufficient for cooking.
Cook till the rice absorbs all water and becomes soft. Serve on a plate and fork out each grain. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with Dal fry or your favorite curry.
RECIPE OF JEERA RICECumin flavored rice cooked in clarified butter and whole spices
If you are looking for other simple rice dishes check Tava Pulav