Cardamom Rice with poached eggs and yogurt + Feasting

November 21, 2012

Cardamom rice with poached eggs and yogurt

Page 240, Ottolenghi

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SG and LB came for a visit over the Thanksgiving holiday and we had days of feasting, painting, games, pajamas, and fun. The kitchen and the garage were our hubs – one for cooking/eating and the other for painting/creation. It was exactly as a 4-day weekend should be.

The evening they arrived, I pulled out one of the Ottolenghi dishes that I have been saving for a special occasion, and that I knew would bring joy to both B and SG. Poached eggs are always a hit with the two of them, and I was ridiculously excited about the cardamom rice with lime and cilantro that goes underneath the eggs. It was a super easy meal to have waiting, even if our travelers had been delayed – just poach the eggs at the last minute and BOOM! delicious dinner.

We also made fantastic food the whole weekend – including a feast of brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes, homemade stuffing, mashed potatoes, orange-cranberry sauce, and an actual turkey! We still had herbs fresh from the garden, even!

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Cardamom Rice with Poached Eggs and Yogurt

    This is what you should cook on a late Sunday morning to really spoil your family. I can’t get enough of it. Additions will be welcomed: consider peas, green beans, fried onions, buttered sunflower seeds and even golden raisins.

  • 4 tbsp peanut oil, plus extra to finish
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 6 fresh curry leaves
  • 8 cardamom pods
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 2 fresh green chiles, thinly sliced
  • coarse sea salt
  • 2 cups basmati rice
  • 3 cups plus 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 8 medium eggs
  • 11/3 cups parsley leaves, chopped
  • 5 cups cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 6 tbsp lime juice
  • 8 tbsp Greek yogurt
  • black pepper
  • Preheat the oven to 350 F. Start with the rice. Heat up the peanut oil in a large, heavy, ovenproof saucepan for which you have a tight-fitting lid. Add the onions and garlic and sauté on low heat for 8 minutes. Add the curry leaves, cardamom, coriander seeds, turmeric, chiles and 1 teaspoon salt. Continue to cook and stir for 4 minutes on medium heat.
  • Add the rice and stir to coat in the oil. Add the water (it should come 3/8 inch above the rice). Cover the pan and put it into the oven. Cook for about 25 minutes. By this point the rice should be totally cooked. When you check, remove the lid very briefly so you don’t lose all the steam in the pan. Remove the pan from the oven, keeping it covered, and set it aside somewhere warm.
  • Fill a shallow saucepan with enough water for a whole egg to cook in. Add the vinegar and bring to a rapid boil. Carefully break each egg into a cup, then gently pour into the boiling water. Immediately remove the pan from the heat and set it aside. After about 4 minutes the egg should be poached to perfection. Using a slotted spoon carefully transfer the poached egg to a bowl of warm water to keep it from cooling down. Once all the eggs are done, dry them on paper towels.
  • When you are nearly finished poaching the eggs, stir the parsley, cilantro and lime juice into the rice and fluff it up with a fork. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
  • Divide the rice among individual serving bowls and spoon yogurt on top. Place two eggs on each portion, drizzle some oil on top and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
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