Wild rice has a signature flavour. It is nutty and pleasantly chewy when not overcooked. It is surprising to know that it is not actually a rice variety, rather the seed of a grass. It has more protein than white or brown rice and expensive too. Added to this, it takes longer to chew and hence the portion size is always smaller. They are great in salads too. More about wild rice .
I have previously purchased wild rice in smaller quantities and was greatly impressed with its taste and texture. But when I wanted to make this for Nupur’s W of , I couldn’t find them. So I am using an organic rice medley which consists of wild rice, brown rice, sweet brown rice and heirloom red rice from Costco. I think this is the great way to start getting acquainted to both wild rice and brown rice, if you haven’t tried them yet.
Wild rice - 1 cup
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Fennel seeds – ½ tsp
Cinnamon – 1 inch
Bay leaf - 1
Onion – 1, medium sized
Green chillies – 2
Garlic – 2 cloves
Ginger – 4 inch piece, cut into big pieces
Mint – ¼ cup, finely chopped
Cilantro – ¼ cup, finely chopped
Cook wild rice either in a sauce pan or pressure cooker. If cooking in a pan, boil 2 cups of water, add ¼ tsp of salt, rice and ginger. Reduce the heat to simmer, close the pan and cook for 30 minutes until done. After 25 minutes check for doneness, and add ½ cup of water if needed. If cooking using a pressure cooker, take 2 cups of water for 1 cup of rice and wait for 3 whistles. Allow to cool and fluff the rice with a fork. Adjust the rice-water ratio according to the hardness of your tap water. I cook white rice in 2:1 rice-water ratio due to the hardness of our water. Remove the ginger pieces from the rice.
In a skillet, heat oil, and splutter cumin and fennel seeds. Also add cinnamon and bay leaf and allow them to brown. Add onion, green chillies and garlic to the skillet and cook till onion turns translucent. Add mint and cilantro, stir well and add wild rice. Mix well, check for seasoning. This pulao pairs well with any vegetable gravy and raita or yogurt based gravy.
Wild rice pulao and potatoes in yogurt sauce.