My pulav is not as disastrous as it used to be. Somehow something seems to have clicked. One thing I’m avoiding is cooking-everything-directly-in-the-cooker altogether. Now I cook rice first and then mix it separately with the masala. That could be the reason for better taste.
Coming to quinoa. Many in my friends circle have cut down on rice and have switched to quinoa. My husband also prefers quinoa. I’ve started substituting rice with quinoa in my rice baths. The way I cooked quinoa before made it somewhat bitter and chewy, and I was also not particularly impressed with the way these baths turned out. But then I came to know(from showmethecurry) that I was cooking it completely wrong. Washing and soaking quinoa is a very important step, never to be missed. It takes the bitterness away.
With the new technique quinoa turned out very soft and pulav came out very tasty.
Quinoa - 2 cups
Water - 3 cups
Mix vegetables(frozen) - 1 cup
Cardamom - 1
Cinnamon - 1/4 inch
Cloves - 3 to 4
Ginger - 1/2 inch piece
Garlic - 3 to 4 pods
Green chillies - 3 to 4(medium spicy)
Cilantro - a bunch
Mint - handful(I didn’t add)
Garam masala - 1/2 tsp (optional)
Coconut - handful(optional)
Wash quinoa. Washing quinoa is tricky, in the sense, it floats and flows down along with water. So either let it rest in the water for a short while before draining so that all quinoa settles down or drain it in a thin meshed colander. Put 1: 1 and 1/2 water(3 cups in this case) and soak quinoa for at least 30 min. Put some salt and a tbsp of oil and pressure cook for 2 whistles(not more than 3 whistles). After the pressure is down, fluff the quinoa with a fork and let it cool.
Grind ‘to grind’ ingredients.
In a wide pan, put oil(oil + ghee is also fine), add jeera. Once it splutters, add vegetables. Sauté till the vegetables are done. If using frozen, sauté till the moisture is gone. Add the ground paste. Sauté till the oil separates. Add little salt. Add cooked quinoa. Mix well. Adjust salt if necessary.