A Taste of Yellow: Spiced Mushroom Pilau

Spiced Mushroom Pilau Barbara at Winos and Foodies is currently holding a once-off food bloggers event called A Taste of Yellow in support of LIVESTRONG Day 2007.

LIVESTRONG Day is the Lance Armstrong Foundation’s (LAF) grassroots advocacy initiative to unify people affected by cancer and to raise awareness about cancer survivorship issues on a national level and in local communities across the country. LIVESTRONG Day 2007 will occur on Wednesday 16 May.

As Barbara says, everyone has been touched by cancer – I know my family and friends have – and she herself is currently undergoing treatment. For A Taste of Yellow she asked that we make a dish using a yellow food. I immediately thought of turmeric, a spice that I find myself using more and more for its warm, earthy flavour and vivid colour. The fact that it has recently come to attention for its reputed anti-cancer properties makes it all the more perfect for this event.

To showcase the colour and flavour of the turmeric, I decided make a one-pot dish of pilau rice. While this would make a good accompaniment to an Indian curry, particularly a tomato-based one, it is also good eaten by itself and makes a good lunchbox filler for a portable lunch.

Spiced Mushroom Pilau
Sunflower oil – 1-2 tablespoons
Onion – 1, sliced thinly
Mushrooms – 2 cups, quartered
Turmeric – 3 teaspoons
Cardamom pods – 5, gently crushed
Cinnamon stick – 1, broken in half
Yellow mustard seeds – 2 teaspoons
Fenugreek – ½ teaspoon
Bay leaves – 2
Basmati rice – 2 cups
Boiling water – 4 cups
Lemon – 1, juiced
Sea salt, freshly ground black pepper

Heat the sunflower oil in a deep heavy-based saucepan. Fry the onions and mushrooms over a moderate heat for 3-4 minutes until the onions are soft. Add the turmeric, cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, mustard seeds, fenugreek and bay leaves and fry for another 2 minutes until the spices release their scent.

Stir in the rice and turn everything over in the pan until the grains are all nicely coated with the spicy mixture. Pour in the 4 cups of boiling water and season well with salt and pepper. Stir once, bring to the boil then put the lid on and turn the heat to its lowest setting and allow to cook for 15-20 minutes until all the water is absorbed and the rice is tender.

Squeeze over the lemon, fluff with a fork, taste for seasoning and serve.

Serves 4.



Food writer. Broadcaster. Blogger. Author. Married to Eight Degrees Brewing. Member of the Irish Food Writers' Guild, founder of Irish Food Bloggers Association and co-author of Sláinte: The Complete Guide to Irish Craft Beer & Cider (New Island)

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5 Responses

  1. Laura says:

    It is a great event isn’t it? I love the look of this and I think I could eat it just on it’s own.

  2. barbara says:

    That is wonderful Caroline. Thank you for supporting A Taste of Yellow.

  3. Caroline says:

    Thanks for your kind comment, Laura! I love dishes like this that cook in one pot – especially good for my tiny Dublin kitchen at the moment – and that are almost as good reheated as they are when they are freshly cooked. I got good comments from colleagues yesterday when they caught the scent of the pilau across the lunchtime table.Barbara – hope you aren’t snowed under trying to collate all the Taste of Yellow entries!

  4. Deb says:

    I stumbled upon your blog a few weeks ago when I was looking for feijoa recipes (And BTW, the feijoa and apple crumble was delish!). I love the sound of the pilau. And brilliant cause it is for too. Hope you don’t mind but I also tagged you with 7 Things About Me. The info is on my blog if you wanna play.

  5. Caroline says:

    Glad to hear you enjoyed the Feijoa and Apple Crumble, Deb. I’ll gladly accept the tag – and hopefully will find some time to do it soon!

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