Jeera Rice Recipe

Basmati rice flavored with cumin : a great accompaniment to curries

For some odd reason, despite hailing from Southern India, my homies seem to steer towards North Indian food more often than I do. I still crave for home cuisine first, then the rest! On some days, I just do not have the time or the inclination to make rotis from scratch or we are out of some store bought substitutes or I really need to use up the basmati rice I have stocked up on. Jeera Rice, a mild in flavor basmati rice flavored with just cumin and green chilies is the best alternative to rotis when I make curries from beans, legumes, lentils or even vegetable curries.

Soak basmati rice in hot water for 15 minutes or room temperature water in 30 minutes, cook it either in an open pot or Instant Pot, it is one of the fastest cooking rice! Season it with salt and this tempering, you are done. It is so subtle in flavor and very accommodating of the flavorful and fragrant curry you serve it with. Needs no limelight, but as a mum I am so thankful for quick fixes and easy recipes, I wanted to make a post on it. One day, when the kiddos crave home food amidst their crazy busy lives, I hope they will look here 😊! We ate it with Red Kidney Bean curry/Rajma the other night. I cooked my basmati rice in the Instant Pot.

Ingredients :

Soaking time : 15 minutes Cook time : 5 minutes Spice level – 🌶

  • White Basmati Rice : 1 cup
  • Salt to taste
  • Lemon juice – 1/4 teaspoon (optional)
  • Water 1.25 to 1.5 cups (the quality of rice dictates the amount of water, add or remove 1/4 cup water based on your basmati rice)

For the tempering :

  • Cumin seeds – 1 Tablespoon
  • Green chilies – 1
  • Curry leaves – 3 or 4 (optional)
  • Asafetida/Hing – 1/4 teaspoon (optional)
  • Cashew nuts – 5-6 pieces (or any nuts of choice)
  • Cilantro for garnish (recommended)

How to :

  1. Rinse Basmati rice once, then soak in hot water for 15 minutes or room temperature water for 30 minutes
  2. After soaking, add Basmati rice to the inner pot of the Instant Pot , add salt, lemon juice, water and cook on High Pressure for 5 minutes, release pressure as soon as the IP timer turns off. **Please adjust time based on quality of rice, some brands need just 3 minutes, whereas some need 5. It is a trial and error to figure out the time and water needed.
  3. Fluff with a fork. Set aside.
  4. In a small skillet, add ghee/clarified butter/any neutral flavor oil and once it heats up, add the cumin seeds, cashews, hing and green chilies. Once the cuims seeds and cashews are roasted well , add this over the cooked rice.
  5. Check for salt, garnish with cilantro and serve with curry of choice.
  6. You can add slivered ginger, if you choose to, to the tempering, not a must.

I forgot to click a picture of our entire meal that night 🙈! We ate the Jeera Rice with this Rajma Masala.

Make it your own by adding your favorite nuts and herbs and enjoy! Thank you for stopping by !

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