15 to 20 medium sized prawns
2 cups Basmati rice
1 cup onion, chopped
4 to 5 green chillies, slit lengthwise
2 to 3 cloves of garlic
1, 1" cinnamon stick
1 Bay leaf
1 tsp poppy seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp Black Cumin seeds (Shahi Jeera)
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp of red chilli powder
1/2 cup of grated coconut
1 tsp Ginger-garlic paste
1/2 cup Cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup mint, chopped
Salt to taste
2 tbsp Oil/Butter
1. Cut and devein the shrimp. Marinate them with 1 tsp red chilli powder, 1/2 tsp turmeric powder and salt for about 20 minutes.
2. In the meantime ,soak the basmati rice in water for about 10 minutes.
3. Dry roast the poppy seeds and coriander seeds for couple of minutes or until you get a nice aroma.
4. In a blender , add the grated coconut, green chillies, garlic cloves , chopped cilantro, chopped mint, poppy seeds and coriander seeds with 2 tbsp of water and blend into a fine paste.
5. Heat Oil/Butter in a non stick skillet, add black cumin seeds, once it starts to sputter, add the cinnamon stick, bay leaf with chopped onions.
6. Once the onions are fried, add ginger-garlic paste and fry for 2 to 3 minutes.
7. Next add the shrimp and fry for another 2 to 3 minutes.
8. Then add the green paste , mix well and let cook covered on medium low heat for another 3 to 4 minutes or until the raw smell of coconut goes away.
9. Next add the basmati rice and fry for a minute or so (Do not mix the rice too much, as the rice grains may break) , add 3 cups of water ( add 1 and 1/2 cups water for every cup of basmati rice used ), add salt ( add 1/2 tsp more salt than what is sufficient) and let cook covered on low flame for 12 to 14 minutes.
7. Remove the skillet from the heat and add a tsp butter on top.
8. Let it sit undisturbed with the lid on for at least 5 minutes . Remove the lid and fluff the rice gently with a spatula.
Note : You can variate this recipe with vegetables( potatoes, carrots, peas etc..) instead of shrimp. I have used both vegetables and shrimp.