Monday, April 9, 2012

Turmeric Rice

Turmeric rice is a golden/ yellow colored rice colored with well "turmeric" For those who don't know what it is, it's a root related to ginger I think, that can color and tinge things yellow, it can be bought fresh at many Asian stores but is commonly sold dried, and ground in powdered form which is what I use and have readily on hand. It's also used in "home remedies"/ alternative medicine, I use it to cleanse my liver from drinking and any inflammation (hot water with turmeric, and black pepper which makes it more bio-available), or when I have colds or want to boost my immune system, and especially for swollen tonsils. Feel free to research it if you would like.

Anyways this rice dish I learned it from one of my little sisters friends parents (I don't know their name it was a LOOOooOOooong time ago, they were family acquaintances) they are from somewhere in India so I'm assuming the dish is Indian.

I use to prepare this pretty often when I learned it a few years ago, it goes well as a side with anything you would serve with white rice with (grilled, pan-fried, or stewed meats, vegetable sides, whatever you want or is appealing to you). It's a nice alternative to the Cuban yellow rice I make, and very simple and quick to put together, plus I always have the ingredients on hand (rice, cumin, bay leaves, turmeric, onions and garlic, things I believe most people probably have in their pantry and on hand) So here goes :)

-2 cups white rice (washed/ rinsed and drained)
-1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
-1 teaspoon ground turmeric powder
-1 onion thinly sliced/ julienned
-4 cloves garlic (or less I really like garlic so I used 4 cloves)
-oil to sautee ingredients (whatever you like to use, I used canola)
-salt to taste
-water (amount depends on what type of rice you use, if using regular long-grain white rice use 3 cups water, if using basmati I like to use 4 cups water, if using a good quality new-crop Jasmine rice use equal water to rice)

(1) Heat a large shallow pan or pot, add oil and when oil is hot sautee sliced onions along with bay leaves until caramelized over medium high to high heat.

(2) When onions get color, add garlic and stir cook until fragrant.

(3) Now add cumin, turmeric and give a quick stir, then add rice another quick stir, hot water and salt to taste (I used about 2 teaspoons salt use more or less to taste, when water begins to boil taste it, if it doesn't taste like sea water/ the ocean you probably should add more, because the rice grows and absorbs a lot of salt other wise it may be bland)

(4) When boiling give a stir, cover, and lower heat, cook for 25 minutes, then turn off and remove from heat let rest another 5 minutes. You can fluff it if you want to at this point. It's ready to serve :)

Please Note:
*** If using a rice cooker and you want to avoid the stove top, simply add your washed rice to the rice cooker, the cold water, salt to taste, and sautee the onions, garlic, spiced with oil in a small pan and dump the stuff you sauteed into the rice cooker, stir, and cook according to your rice cooker directions :)