It was one of those busy weekends, while juggling with multiple chores, I was scanning around for a quick glutenfree lunch idea that my kids would enjoy too. I checked on the ingredients I had lying around and got caught up on a call with my dear friend and fellow blogger, sharing stories of biryani's we had cooked over the years and her take on Prawns biryani sounded so good! My daughter especially is a biryani lover and both my kids love prawns in any form. Prawns biryani sounded like the perfect lunch idea, but once I got done with my long phone call, all I had was 50 minutes to lunch time! I usually take a minimum of 2 hours slow cook my biryani to get all those flavours to infuse.
With no time to kill, I decided to make a Pulav instead (the rice get's cooked with the rest of ingredients, no pre-cooking required) and of course added as many veggies as I could spot in my refrigerator. I have used whole biryani spices in my version, but if you are making this for kids who aren't used to such intense spices, you can avoid it completely. Of course, if you're expecting guests for lunch, please go all out with the spices, it's got a heavenly aroma to it.
Start off with cleaning and soaking the rice, slicing up the veggies (onions first, as they take time to brown) and while you initiate the browning of the onions, you can clean those shrimps and on the side fry up the cashews and this super yum Prawns Pulav gets done in 50 minutes! Make sure you have your kids helping you out with the food prepping, it adds to the fun in the kitchen and helps you with some bonus time.
So let's get started with those ingredients :)
1 tsp whole Cumin
3 slightly crushed whole green cardamom
7 to 8 crushed peppercorns
2 cinnamon sticks
2 bay leaves
2 tbsp ghee/ vegetable oil
800 grams well cleaned fresh prawns
500 grams long grained basmati rice
3 medium sliced onions
1 tsp each ginger and garlic paste
2 slit green chilies
3 diced tomatoes
1 peeled, cubed potato
1 diced green capsicum (or any other colour)
1 handful coriander leaf
Salt to taste
1 litre hot boiling water
Chopped Coriander leaves
1/2 cup whole cashews
Roast the cashews in a teaspoon of oil and set this aside.
Thoroughly wash the basmati rice and soak it covered in water for 20 minutes, drain it well and set it aside.
Heat the oil/ghee in a deep non stick dish/ casserole and to this add the whole spices, stir it around in a medium fire until a lovely aroma comes thru. Add to this the sliced onions and a tsp of salt and let this fry until its get a caramalised brown colour. Now add the ginger and garlic paste and 2 green chillies, fry it nicely until the raw smell goes away. Now add the diced tomatoes, a handful coriander leaves, stir this around and cover for 5-6 minutes until the tomatoes slightly soften. In goes the shelled prawns, stir fry this for another 5 minutes along with the tomato onion mix. Now add the pre-soaked basmati rice, cubed potato, capsicum, 1 litre hot boiling water and more salt as per your taste.
This needs to boil well and then reduce it to a simmer, now cover and let the rice cook until its' not too soft, but just right. It really won't take very long, as both the rice and prawn have a tendency of cooking fast. Once done, fluff up the rice and serve it hot decorated with more fresh coriander leaves and the fried cashews.
This goes well with lentil papads and pickles and it's a very impressive dish to serve if you are hosting a brunch.
Tip- If you are not making it for kids, then you can add in a total of 4 green chilies. Feel free to add other veggies like green peas, french beans, small cauliflower florets or even diced carrots.