Cooking it up on slumber prone days – Coconut Milk Pulao and Potato Stew Recipe

Most of the times, the last thing I want to do on a Sunday is to cook…. …..and my mantra for cooking is mostly to just make it up as I go, tasting like a maniac….and majorly changing everything to suit my mood and the pantry stock for the day/week…..i am a slave to easy and quick cooking…..and can’t believe it when anyone tells me they spend hours in the kitchen…..well to each his own I guess……

While I am terrified of using too many packaged products….…we do indulge in our quota of instant noodles from time to time….and I do know a life saver in a tetrapack or vaccum sealed when I see one….i like to stock frozen peas and now my current hot favourite is potato flakes…..but other than that, most of the stuff I make is from fresh ingredients……coconut milk being another exception…..i always avoided like the plague recipes which called for coconut milk because there was no way I saw myself extracting it….but miracles sometimes come packaged in a tetrapack!! When I first found this on supermarket shelves, I couldn’t stop myself from buying a couple, reaching home to open a carton and slurp it up….on the sly of course!! Then I found that coconut milk can uplift the most sorry preparations….sweet and savoury….and take it up to the level of almost always receiving praise….it is rich, creamy and has me completely under its spell……a word of caution though…it is extremely high in fat and cholesterol and so after the initial euphoria, I use it sparingly, but happily nonetheless!!

Coconut rice and potato stew was a Sunday lunch on a day when I wanted to spend as less time as possible in the kitchen and yet not compromise on taste and flavour…… a few minutes of prep work, another few minutes frying and stirring and this meal practically cooks itself…..this is going off to celebrate AFAM: this month we celebrate coconut……A Fruit A Month, the monthly event Started by Maheswari of Beyond The Usual,that puts spotlight on a fruit comes to Suganya’s Tasty Palettes. This is also off to EasyCrafts of Simple Indian cooking who is hosting Mixed rice varieties event.

While I find it most convenient and quick to make pulavs and biryani other than the dum ka biryani in a pressure cooker or pressure pan, there was a time when any rice dish i cooked in a pressure cooker would resemble a goop good enough to stick a shoe sole…..sig came to my rescue….she talks of switching the heat off after one whistle for a perfectly cooked non mushy grain of rice. this works like magic!! The build up of pressure, even after being turned off is sufficient to cook the rice fully without turning it into a paste….however please be warned that this works only when the rice is being cooked directly in the pressure cooker and not placed in another vessel……

For the coconut rice

(serves 3 – we always have unexpected guests…so I always cook one extra portion-just in case)

2 cups long grained rice (basmati tends to overpower the aroma and flavour of coconut milk), washed and drained

1 cup thick coconut milk (I used dabur homemade from a carton)

1 medium onion, sliced fine

2 green chillies slit

2 each cloves, cardamom and cinnamon

1 bay leaf

Salt to taste

3 cups water

2 T fresh / frozen grated coconut

2 T cooking oil

In a pressure cooker, heat the oil, add the whole garam masala and fry for half a minute. Add the sliced onions and fry till golden brown. Add the green chillies, grated coconut and fry till they wilt. Add the washed and drained rice and fry gently for a minute, till coated with the oil. Add salt to taste, coconut milk, water and put the lid on with the weight. Wait for one strong whistle, turn off and wait for the pressure to be released. Once you are able to open the cooker, fluff with a fork and serve with curry / stew of choice.

For the potato stew

3 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed into 1 inch pieces

2 green chillies slit

½ cup thick coconut milk

2 star anise

A few curry leaves

Salt to taste

1 t oil

To be ground to a paste

I medium onion

2 cloves

1 green cardamom

2 1 inch pieces cinnamon

1 t jeera (cumin seeds)

1 t coriander seeds

3-4 pepper corns

1 inch piece of fresh ginger

In a pressure cooker (trust me, it cooks like a dream in this) heat the oil, add the star anise and fry for a couple of seconds, add the slit green chillies and curry leaves and stir. Add the ground masala and fry with the salt on medium heat till it is beginning to brown. Add the potatoes and fry till well coated with the masala. Add the coconut milk, water and check the seasoning. Cover and cook on pressure for 2-3 whistles. Turn off and allow the steam to release. Open the cooker, check for the amount and thickness of the gravy. Dish it out and serve.

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10 Comments Add yours

  1. Raaga says:

    I use a lot of fresh stuff… but my pantry is always well stocked… given how lazy I am, I have to be prepared for a laziness attack!

    Both these dishes look yum.

    And I ALWAYS cook rice and pulao and everything in the cooker 🙂 goop or no goop 🙂

  2. easycrafts says:

    Thanks arundati for this comfort food to the event…see u at the roundup

  3. Aparna says:

    Coconut in the rice and in the stew. Great. Sri Lankans make a great rice with coconut milk.

  4. arundathi says:

    mmm lazy sunday meals… delicious!

  5. Bharti says:

    That looks pretty elaborate for a slumber prone day. Love the title and I wish I could conjure up stuff like that on my slumber prone days!

  6. Stew looks too delicious..Havent had coconut rice..shuld try this

  7. skribles says:

    sounds like a perfect and yummy combi!

  8. coconut rice and the curry look yummy! i never cook rice in the pressure cooker (except for rosematta rice), big pots over the flame is still my choice!

  9. notyet100 says:

    coconut rice looks ne w,,,nice recipe,.

  10. Asha says:

    I always cook rice in the MW, perfect every time. Stew looks yum!:))

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