STEAMED JASMINE RICE WITH BROAD BEANS AND DILL
As a child, I had no time for paqla pilaw. Whenever mum would bring the platter piled high with green rice to the table, I would flat out refuse to add it to my plate, much to her disappointment. It was just too green. Then something happened when I hit around 26 – I started craving this dish. I have a theory that it’s because my taste buds grew up and started to understand the flavours, after all, this is not just rice.
Paqla pilaw is a great alternative to your usual rice accompaniment, and is another vegan gem. Traditionally this rice is always served with lamb, but it goes very well with chicken and fish too.
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Serves: 2 hungry people, plus one portion for tomorrows lunch
1. If using fresh broad beans, pod your beans and bring them to the boil for around 3-4 minutes before draining and placing them into a bowl. I used frozen broad beans and allowed them to thaw for a few minutes in a bowl of water at room temperature. Once they are at the right temperature to handle, slip each broad bean out of its outer skin and put them to one side, discarding the skins. This step is time consuming, but worth it for the flavour, colour and texture.
2. Wash and finely chop the dill.
3. Wash the jasmine rice until the water runs clear.
4. Add 2 tbsp sunflower oil to the pan. Add the chopped dill and the de-skinned broad beans and gently fry for 4 minutes until the room fills with the scent of dill. Add ¼ tsp salt.
5. Add the drained jasmine rice and stir so every grain is coated with the green mixture. Next add 500ml of boiled water. Once the mixture starts bubbling turn the temperature down to a low heat, cover the pot and gently simmer for 12 - 15 minutes (check pack instructions) until the rice has soaked up all of the water. Try not to remove the lid while the rice is steaming as this will slow down the cooking process.