Vegetable Pulao from the Beaches of Goa

Goan Vegetable Pulao

Ah, the beaches of Goa. How they stretch on and on for miles and miles. Once pristine in the days when I began to visit Goa, now the popular beaches are littered with refuse at high tide. It is not a pretty sight, but thankfully the government is working to return them to their former glories.

Yet, Goa remains beautiful and worth visiting for a slow and relaxing holiday. On one of my visits, staying with some friends who run a small B&B and lovely restaurant, Mario made this pulao for a Sunday Lunch. It remains a favourite and always, always, brings those beaches back to me. I remember being woken every morning, not by the sounds of the waves, but by the sounds of the kitchen hands beginning their preparations for the day. The happy sounds of their chopping and laughter would filter through to our bedroom and we would always wake to amazing aromas and great food.

This recipe begins cooking the rice on the stove top and finishes it in the oven, similar to the Obla Chaval method. The recipe is scaled for a large gathering. So, if you are not feeding an army, you might like to make half quantities which will feed 4 – 6, depending how you use it. The full recipe will therefore feed about 8 -12, great for a family gathering but perhaps a little large for an everyday family meal! Depends on your family size and appetites of course 🙂

Are you after other recipes from Goa? Try Goan Rechad Masala, Ladyfingers Recheio, and Sweet Surnoli Dosa.

Are you after other Pulao dishes? Try  a Sago Pilaf, Green Pea Pulao and Cauliflower Pilaf.

You can browse all of our dishes from Goa, and all of our Pilaf/Pulao recipes. You might also like all of our Rice recipes too.  Or browse all of our Indian recipes. Alternatively, take some time to explore our easy Late Autumn dishes.

This is one of our Retro Recipes, vegetarian recipes from our first blog from 1995 – 2006.. Feel free to browse other recipes from our Retro Recipes series.

Goan Vegetable Pulao

Goan Vegetable Pulao

500g Basmati rice
75ml ghee, Indian Sesame Oil or vegetable oil
2 medium onions, sliced
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 green chillies, slit from the tail to 3/4 way to the top without cutting the chilli in half
850 ml hot water or stock

ginger-garlic paste
2 cm piece ginger root
2 garlic cloves

2 cinnamon sticks
2 black cardamom
6 green cardamom
4 cloves
have a blade of mace

1 carrot, cut in batons or julienned
70g green beans, sliced
70g fresh peas (frozen is Ok)

0.5 bunch coriander leaves, chopped

Wash and soak the rice in cold water for 20 minutes. Drain well.

In a spice blender, blend the garlic, ginger and some of the salt to make the ginger paste. Add a little water if necessary.

In a large, heavy pan suitable for the oven, heat the ghee or oil and crackle the whole spices. Add the sliced onions and a little more salt and sauté over medium heat until the onions are golden brown.

Add the ginger and garlic paste and allow to sizzle for some moments, then add the chopped tomatoes and stir. Add the vegetables, sauté for 2 minutes or so and then add the slit chillies.

Now add the rice to the pot. Stir until it is well mixed with the vegetables. Add the hot stock or water, bring it back to the boil, and cook till the moisture is nearly absorbed. Cover tightly and place it in a moderate oven until the rice is done. Serve hot, garnished with fresh coriander leaves.


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