The sweetness of the onion and the coconut milk complements the saltiness of the rice, so ensure you season this dish well. You can use red onion if you want a sweeter flavor and add a couple of finely diced fresh green chilies along with the onion, if you’d like more heat. The rice gets a beautiful pink color from the red kidney beans that looks pretty served with a mixed green salad, such as lettuce and sliced avocado.
- 1 large onion, finely sliced
- 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 1/4 cups basmati rice, washed and drained
- 1/2 x 14 oz. can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- a big handful of fresh cilantro, finely chopped (stems and all)
- scant 1 cup coconut milk mixed with the same amount of cold water
Heat 2 tablespoons of sunflower oil in a heavy-based saucepan and fry the onion and garlic on high heat for 3–4 minutes, then reduce the heat to medium and fry for a further 2 minutes, or until soft.
Add the rice and fry for 30 seconds, without stirring too much, then add the kidney beans, cilantro, and some salt and black pepper to taste.
Pour in the coconut milk and water mixture. Bring to a boil, then stir the rice once and cover. Reduce the heat to the lowest setting and simmer for 12 minutes without lifting the lid.
Remove from the heat and leave the pan, covered, for a further 5 minutes to allow the rice to finish cooking in the steam.
Remove the lid, fluff up the rice with a fork, and serve hot.
Excerpted from Indian in 7: Delicious Indian Recipes in 7 Ingredients or Fewer by Monisha Bharadwaj, Kyle Books 2019. Reprinted with permission.