My parents made the most delicious rice pilaf for Christmas dinner and I've been dreaming of it ever since. This recipe is my interpretation of it on a more humble scale. Great texture and taste combination.
Roast Veggie Rice Pilaf
1 cup of basmati rice
¼ cup of pink lentils
½ stock cube or 2 tsp. of stock powder - chicken or vegetable
1 clove of garlic, peeled and chopped
2 ½ cups of water
½ tsp. turmeric
½ tsp. cumin
8 cups of roasting veggies, chopped
(butternut, mushrooms, onion, peppers, carrots, courgettes, broccoli etc.)
1 Tbsp. of oil
20 rosemary leaves and 20 thyme leaves, bruised
¼ medium lemon rind, grated
½ tsp. of salt
½ a cup of mixed nuts
1 Tbsp. of sugar
¼ tsp. of salt
1 tsp. of water
50g dried cranberries (optional)
½ cup of toasted coconut (optional)
Combine the rice, lentils, stock, garlic, water and spices in a medium sized, heavy bottomed pot with a lid. Bring to the boil and simmer until the water level reaches the level of the rice. Turn off the heat and leave the rice on the stove with the lid on for 15 minutes.
Pre heat the oven on grill and place the wire rack in the centre of the oven.
Chop up the roasting veggies. Cut harder veggies into smaller pieces than the softer veggies. In a bowl combine the vegetables, oil, salt and herbs and toss until the veggies are all coated with oil. Spread them out on a roasting pan and place them in the oven. Check the veggies every 5 minutes or so to check if they are not blackening too much and turn them with a spatula until they are cooked through and a little shrivelled and browning in places. If they are blackening too fast, either drop the heat a little or place the wire rack lower in the oven. If they are drawing too much water, leave the oven door open a crack for the steam to be released. Once cooked set aside until ready for use.
In a hot pan start roasting the nuts a little. When they are starting to brown, add the sugar, salt and water and move the nuts around in the pan with a spatula until they are coated and the water has evaporated. Set aside until ready for use.
Combine all the ingredients while still warm and serve into bowls or on a big platter. If using as a salad, serve cooled on a pile of lettuce leaves. Serve with plain yoghurt or chutney if desired.
This dish isn’t the best for freezing but will last for up to two days in sealed container in the fridge.
PS - if you want this recipe in a nice printable word format, please e-mail me at email@example.com and I will gladly mail it to you.