There’s something about the simplicity of Summertime cooking that I love. If you’re like me, you prefer to be outdoors as much as possible (and not cooped up in the kitchen), you love the wonderful variety of fresh vegetables available at the market, and you opt for lighter dishes rather than heavier meals, especially on those hot summer days. In my view, this recipe is a perfect summer dish. You can eat it on its own or pair it with just about anything you like, whether it’s grilled shrimp hot-off-the-BBQ or a chilled zucchini raita. Steamed basmati rice is gently combined with sautéed vegetables like purple cabbage, cauliflower, carrots, and sweet peas, fresh ginger, roasted cumin seeds, and dashes of ground coriander and paprika. You can use any combination of vegetables you like, anything works, really. This dish has just the right amount of herbs and spices to give it flavor, but isn’t overpowering, making it both light and easy to make. Enjoy it on a hot afternoon or on a cool summer evening.
Basmati Rice with Mixed Vegetables
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 teaspoon minced ginger
- 2 carrots, diced
- Handful of cauliflower florets
- 1/2 cup chopped red/purple cabbage
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- 2 cups cooked basmati rice (equals 3/4 cup uncooked rice)
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika powder
- 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander powder
- Salt to taste
- Fresh cilantro
- Heat oil and cumin seeds in a wide non-stick skillet on a medium flame. Once the cumin seeds begin moving a little, add onions and ginger and sauté for couple of minutes. Add all the vegetables, except for the peas, and sauté for another couple of minutes.
- Add salt and spices, mix well. Then add water, cover and cook for 5 minutes. Stir often, making sure it does not burn.
- Once the vegetables are fork-tender, add the cooked basmati rice and mix well. Add more salt to taste if needed. Serve immediately topped with fresh chopped cilantro.