Friday, September 11, 2009

Soya Chunks Pulao In Whole Spices

Soya chunks is a cosy chunky favorite of ours and we simply love to add this chewy delight in any dish we love. I have also become a big fan of Shan Biryani/Pulao Masala. This Masala is very similar to our MDH/Kitchen King range of Masala's available at all India Grocery stores and is a Pakistani Masala which also has some whole spices like Jai Phal, Cardomom in them. Their range of Masala's make a great tasty dish out of Meat/ Rice dishes. I had some cooked rice from the previous day. I mixed the whole spices with Rice and added abundant helpings of Soya chunks; the dish came out quite tasty much to our amusement. Works well with cold rice done from previous day's dinner or lunch lot.

Preparation + Cooking time: 60 minutes
Serves: 6-8 servings

Rice (cooked) - 6-8 cups of previous day cooked rice or 2 and 1/2 cup rice
Soya Chunks (cooked) - 1 and 1/2 cup
Onion (chopped) - 1/2 cup
Shan Pilaf/Biryani Masala - 1/2 a packet
Pepper powder - 1/2 teaspoon
Cloves - 5-6 pods
Cinnamon stick - 1 large
Cardomom - 3-4 pods
Bay Leaves - 3-4 pieces
Oil/Ghee - for frying
Salt - as per taste

Cook Soya chunks in double the quantity of water with salt. Once they pop up in size (almost double the volume), allow to cool and squeeze them out of water. Thoroughly wash them in water 2-3 times and set aside.

In a deep dish saucepan, heat 3-4 tablespooons of oil/ghee, saute chopped onions, cloves, cardomom pods with seeds within, cinnamon stick and bay leaves. Once the spices fry they pop up in size. Fry all this on a low to medium flame lest you burn the spices. Add the cooked Soya chunks and add Shan Pulao Masala. Stir well. Add few teaspoons of water and allow to cook on low flame with covered lid for 4-5 minutes.

Open the lid and add the rice and give a gentle toss. Add pepper powder and salt as desired. Stir well. The rice and soya chunks should get an even coating of spices on their surface. Last but not the least, add few spoons of ghee on top, give a gentle stir and turn off the flame. Serve hot with a curry and pickle.

Few Tips: This dish is little high in calories, soya adds the desired flavour. You could tone down the oil/ghee content as desired. Keep in mind to squeeze the water out of soya chunks for better soya flavour.

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