Veg Pilau


  • 65ml light olive oil
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 5ml cumin seeds
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 7,5ml coarse salt
  • 10ml crushed garlic
  • 10ml crushed ginger
  • 15ml red chilli powder
  • 3 large potatoes, sliced and fried
  • 3 carrots, sliced and fried
  • 5ml cumin
  • 10ml ground coriander
  • 5ml garam masala
  • Pinch of turmeric
  • 250ml frozen peas
  • 100ml fresh cream
  • 3 cups cooked basmati rice
  • 1 x 400g tin lentils
  • 200g paneer, sliced
  • 200ml boiling water
  • 200g asparagus
  • 200g broccoli
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 45ml olive oil
  • Fried onions, to garnish
  • Black pepper to season

Here’s how:

  1. Heat the oil in an 30cm pot.
  2. Add the cinnamon stick and bay leaf.
  3. Fry until fragrant and then sprinkle in the cumin seeds.
  4. Add the chopped onion and salt.
  5. When the onion is light golden brown, add the ginger and garlic.
  6. Stir fry the mixture for a few seconds, add the re chilli powder.
  7. Add the par cooked potatoes and carrots.
  8. Lower the heat and sprinkle the ground spices over the veggies.
  9. Add the frozen peas and pour in the fresh cream.
  10. Layer the cooked basmati rice over the veggies.
  11. Layer the lentils and sliced paneer over the rice.
  12. Pour the boiling water over the rice and leave to steam on the lowest setting.
  13. Place the asparagus and broccoli into a bowl with 20ml cold water.
  14. Cover with microwave safe cling wrap.
  15. Place a few ice cubes into a large bowl and fill with water.
  16. Microwave the veggies for 90 seconds – 2 minutes depending on the size of the asparagus.
  17. Remove the cling wrap and place the veggies into the iced water to stop the cooking process.
  18. Remove from the ice water and place on top of the steamed rice. 
  19. Pour the lemon juice and olive oil over the steamed veggies.
  20. Garnish with crispy fried brown onion and season with black pepper.