Normally in the coconut rice recipes I have come across, the rice is either dry with just grated coconut or it is cooked in coconut milk. This recipe combines both to a certain extent so that you get the texture of grated coconut and the awesome nutty flavor from the coconut milk. If you love coconuts then this is a dish that could drive you nuts! Well, not because it is complicated - it is super easy and quick and full of coconut goodness and richness…yummy :)
Since this is my first post on coconuts, let us have a look at the nutritive value of this nut (source: www.quitehealthy.com).
Firstly, I am a great fan of coconut oil. Yep! Use it in all my cooking except for the Italian dishes. Once a villain, the coconut oil is now being heralded as the biggest super food, with self confessed health freaks even drinking it raw! Sadly, we indians still keep shunning it, turning to the more unnatural trans-fats but are highly processed. Well, each to his own!
The beauty of this incredible nut is that it has loads of health benefits in all forms - be it oil, milk, water or flesh. Awesome right? It is indeed high in saturated fat but now research shows that all of it is not really that harmful. So it is not as bad as we think it is…
Enough of the science…I for one am all for this super food :) Let's get on with the recipe!
Coconut Rice - Recipe:
- Basmati rice - 1 cup, soaked for at least 1 hour and drained.
- Thick coconut milk - 1/2 cup
- Grated coconut - 1-2 tbsp
- Water - 3/4 cup
- Onions - 1/2 medium onion, thinly sliced
- Garlic - 2 cloves, finely chopped
- Mustard seeds - 1/4 tsp
- Dry red chili - 1 no.
- Curry leaves - 1 sprig
- Cashews - a handful, roughly chopped
- Virgin coconut oil - about 1 tbsp
- Heat coconut in a deep non-stick pan. Add the mustard seeds. Once it splutters, add the dry red chili and curry leaves and fry for few seconds.
- Then add the onions and garlic. When the onion turns translucent add the cashews and grated coconut. Saute for few minutes till the cashews begin to brown and the coconut gets toasted.
- Now add the basmati rice, coconut milk and water. Season with salt and give it a good stir.
- Cover the pan tightly and then let the rice cook undisturbed on medium-low flame, for about 15 minutes. Open the lid and check if the rice is cooked. If not, adjust the water and cook covered for few more minutes.
- Once cooked switch off the flame and leave it to rest for about 10 minutes. When ready to serve, gently mix with fork or spoon and serve warm.