A blog about cooking and food, and how to make it taste good and be healthy. The dishes are almost all gluten/dairy free, and many are vegetarian. The focus is on techniques and ingredients over recipes - this is about everyday cooking, and that means making it work with whats on hand!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Vaguely Middle-Eastern Rice with Lamb Sausage

I wanted to try to a rice dish along the lines of pulao, and had some nice lamb sausage on hand. This is what I came up with...

I started with some whole spices in a good amount of oil - cardamom, mustard seeds, and cumin seed. I get the pot hot, then add the oil, then let the oil get hot, then add the spices, and shortly after added some chopped leek.
Once the seeds started popping, I added rice (I used 2.5 cups of white Basmati) and fried it up in the oil.
I stirred it slowly for a while to get the rice grains coated in oil and to keep it from sticking. I added 2.5 cups of liquid (the same volume as the rice).  I used half vegetable broth and half water.  I left that to steam for about 10 minutes, and used the time to fry up the lamb sausage and chop vegetables - zucchini, green pepper, sun dried-tomatoes, and and an apple.
Once most of the liquid had been steamed into the rice, I added another 2 cups of half water, half broth (bringing the total volume of liquid to a bit under twice the volume of the rice) and gave it a stir, which maybe I shouldn't have - in general you don't stir rice except for risotto.  I poured the lamb sausage and all its pan fat on top of the rice, and added the vegetables on top of that.  I then covered it for another 10 minutes.
When it came out, I added some salt (only a little bit because the sausage was salty), cumin, tumeric, corriander, and black pepper, and stirred it all up.
I think it came out very well.  The rice was tender and in well defined grains, the vegetables weren't over cooked, and the sausage and lamb fat added a great flavor to the dish.  The leftovers the next day were even better.  Next time I make it, I am going to add the powdered spices before I add the rice to let the flavors develop better.

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