LEMON RICE (Indian, for four)
2 cups long-grain basmati white rice
5 tablespoons vegetable oil
2/3 cup minced shallot
2 large garlic cloves, or to taste, minced
2-inch piece of fresh gingerroot, peeled and minced
the rind of 2 lemons, removed with a vegetable peeler and minced
2 cups canned, low-salt chicken broth
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 teaspoons black mustard seeds (you can find them at Kalyustans)
1/3 cup finely chopped salted, roasted peanuts
½ teaspoon turmeric
juice of 2 lemon
- Measure rice into a fine-mesh sieve and place sieve into a bowl of cold water to soak for 30 minutes. Remove sieve from water and drain rice for 20 minutes. (Soaking and drying the rice thoroughly are important to remove the starch from the kernels before cooking. Otherwise, your rice may be gummy.)
- Heat 4 tablespoons oil in a 3-quart, heavy saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, and cook the shallot, garlic and ginger over moderate heat, stirring, until the shallot is softened, about 3 minutes. Add the rice and rind and cook, stirring, 2 minutes.
- Stir in the broth, 2 cups water, salt and pepper to taste (Do not stir again until rice is finished), bring the mixture to a boil and continue to boil 8 minutes, until the surface of the rice is dry and covered with steam holes.
- Reduce heat to lowest possible setting, cover pot tightly (use both a tea towel and lid) and cook 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and let rice stand, still covered, 5 minutes more. Remove cover and fluff rice with a fork.
- Heat the final tablespoon of oil in a deep 12-inch skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking and cook mustard seeds, stirring, until they begin to pop. Add ¼ cup peanuts and cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Add turmeric, rice and more salt if needed, stirring to coat the rice thoroughly. Remove from heat and sprinkle with lemon juice and remaining peanuts.
adapted from Gourmet Magazine, October, 1987 and January, 2000