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Author Notes: I’ve had this recipe in mind for a long time, but I’ve always be restrained by the want of pomegranates. My pomegranate tree is laden with fruits by now, but they’re still unripe – I’ll have to wait till next month, probably. So, when I found pomegranates at the supermarket I made up my mind: I bought one and tried this exceedingly aromatic, perfumed rice. Well, the experiment has been a success: the pomegranate seeds add a fresher touch to the spicy warmth of cumin and cardamom, and quench the hot tangy taste of the Tandoori-style Chicken and Mango Chutney. —Rita Banci
- 4.2 ounces Patna rice
- 1/2 pomegranate
- 1 shallot
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 4-5 cardamom pods
- knob of butter
- salt to taste
- Soak the rice for about half an hour in a bowl full of cold water (this must totally cover the rice), changing water a couple of times: this procedure helps to eliminate rice starch. Rinse and strain the rice, then place it in a large saucepan with cold water again and bring to the boil. When the boiling point is reached, add salt and let it all boil for about ten minutes (rice grains must be slightly underdone).
- In the meantime, deseed the pomegranate (start this process early, because it takes a pretty long time, though only half a pomegranate is necessary): remember to remove all the white pith from the seeds because it has a bitter taste.
- Chop the shallot and place it in a frying pan with butter: cook for about 2-3 minutes, until butter is melt and shallot is lightly golden. Add cumin and cardamom seeds (you have to cut the pods to take out the seeds) and cook for further 3-4 minutes.
- When rice is done, strain it and place in the frying pan with the spice and butter and sauté it for a couple of minutes. Finally stir in the pomegranate seeds.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe with Cardamom