I love pilaf/pulao dishes. I experiment a lot with flavor combinations and this is one such attempt, which was a success! The nuts, basil and parmesan that makes a great pesto or pasta accompaniment, added so much flavor to the rice.
It was also well balanced from the crunchy pine nuts, cheesy and salty parmesan, nutty toasted rice and the intense basil.
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup long-grain white rice
2 tbsps crushed red pepper( I like a lot of spice, for a milder version use 1/2 or 1 tbsp)
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1/3 cup pine nuts
1 cup parmesan cheese
1/3 cup fresh basil, finely chopped
1/2 tbsp dry basil
In a large pan, heat the olive oil for 30 seconds and add crushed red peppers and rice. Over medium-high heat, stir continuously until the rice turns opaque and starts to turn golden and looks slightly toasted. Add the vegetable stock and bring to a boil.
When the stock starts to boil turn the heat to low, cover the pan and simmer for 20 minutes. Check to make sure all the liquid is absorbed. When it is, turn off heat and let rice sit for 5 minutes.
While rice sits, toast pine nuts in dry pan until slightly browned, about 2 minutes. Shake pan a few times and watch them closely so they don’t get too brown.
After the rice sits for 5 minutes, fluff with a fork, stir in parmesan cheese, chopped basil, and pine nuts and serve immediately.