By Lilian Ntege
Rice is, without doubt, one of the go-to dishes when one needs to prepare a quick meal.
It can also easily be turned into an elegant dish for special occasions.
With the right combination of spices, plain rice can be turned into delicious pilau.
Pilau rice is a dish, commonly known almost in the whole of East Africa, introduced by people of Arabic origin.
It is usually intensely flavoured, and varies in preparation.
It is also always super spicy, loaded with various ingredients depending on the person’s criteria of preparation and taste.
Fatuma Sako, a private Chef takes us through the process of preparing the best tasty pilau.
l Rice (Basmati long grain). This is preferred because it dries faster.
l Green pepper
l Spices (Pilau masala, cumin seeds, coriander, and curry powder).
l Irish Potatoes (small size). This is optional.
l Meat (chicken, prawns, beef or fish). All these according to one’s choice.
The ingredients are measured depending on how much rice is to be prepared.
l Boil the meat first except for the prawns and fish.
l Pour the cooking oil into your cooking pot and let it heat over a medium flame.
l When the oil has heated, add onions, grated or crashed garlic and ginger.
l Let them fry for a few minutes until light brown. (If you want it to be so brownish, fry the onions until golden brown).
l Add in your spices and mix for a few minutes then add meat. Let it cook until it starts to get sticky. Then add in the soup from the boiled meat. It is important to measure the amount of soup or water depending on the amount of rice. Half a kilogram of rice needs two cups of water.
l Finally add the rice and salt. You can add royco cubes for more taste.
l Cover your pot carefully using a foil or a light cover and let it cook on low heat.
Then serve while hot. Pilau can be served for lunch or dinner. It can be accompanied with gravy soup or alone depending on one’s taste.