Long recess ( lunch break) in school was something to look forward to. Books and pens were hastily shoved in the desk- drawers and lunch boxes whipped out. The group would gather in a circle, some sitting at their desks, some standing and an assortment of 'dabbas' (lunch-boxes), mostly wrapped in polybags.
Square, rectangular, round, two tiered or sometimes three tiered, stainless steel or plastic boxes opened to display a variety of food.
The roti-subzi ones were scoffed at ( unless the subzi was 'a-ma-zin-g') the parathas, idli- dosa, rice dishes were welcomed and devoured in a matter of minutes and sweet treats, if any were sparingly distributed or better, traded for books ( Enid Blytons, Hardy Boys, Three Investigators and Archie comics).
Does this all sound familiar?
I would harass my Mother for fancy stuff everyday and beg, plead, cry for 'canteen- money' on the day she planned roti- subzi for the lunch box. I would rather eat a batata-wada chutney or a hot dog roll ( Vegetarian, in the Indian context).
I always liked pulav /pulao/ pilaf. Tiny vegetable pieces, that never got in your way, mildly flavored with whole spices and when served with a wedge of mango or lime pickle I was content. A fried papad and a dahi raita would be like icing on the cake!
This Spinach Pulao came as a wonderful change. I read the recipe in 660curries when I had it from the library and the simplicity caught my attention and stamped itself in my memory. Though this is not the exact version, it comes close, I believe. This is my version.
1 cup Long grained rice
1 cup Spinach (8 oz.) washed and chopped
1/2 Onion, thinly sliced
1 tsp Cumin seeds
2 Tbs Ghee ( or oil)
1 Bayleaf (optional- NOT a part of the original recipe, my addition)
Salt to taste
2 cups Water
Wash rice , drain and set aside
Heat ghee/ oil over medium high heat and add the bay leaf (if using), cumin seeds. After they sizzle, add the onion and saute till till translucent
Add the chopped spinach and cook till it wilts.
Add the rice, salt and water
Cover and cook till the water is absorbed and the rice is fully cooked
Alternatively, after adding the rice, combine well and at this stage, transfer all the contents to a rice cooker, add water and cook.
I served this pulao with daal fry .
I entered thefoodie blogroll giveaways and won 2 jars and a few sachets of Almond Butter !!! I am looking forward to using these. Any suggestions?Pin It