Indian-style rice (pilau)


  • 25 g butter (you can use ghee or 2 tablespoons of olive oil, if you prefer)
  • 1 large white onion sliced
  • 3 cm stick of cinnamon
  • 4 cardamom pods bashed
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 300 g basmati rice
  • 600 ml boiling water


    step 1

    Melt the butter very gently in a medium-sized saucepan. Add the sliced onion, cinnamon, bashed cardamom pods, cloves, turmeric, salt and bay leaves. Cover with a lid and cook on a low heat for 5-10 minutes until the onions are very soft but not brown, stirring occasionally

    step 2

    Add in the basmati rice and stir to coat the rice in the onions and spices.

    step 3

    Pour in 600ml boiling water and bring back to the boil. Cover with a lid and turn the heat right down. Continue cooking for 8 minutes or until all the water is absorbed.

    step 4

    Turn the heat off completely (take the saucepan off the burner if you are using electric), but leave the lid on. Allow the rice to steam for 5 minutes.

    step 5

    Serve with your favourite curry