Peas Rice with Crunchy Cottage Cheese
It was going to be Feta Cheese. And I was going to call this ‘Feta Peas Rice’. But do you know how much Feta Cheese costs at the nearby supermarket? It costs an arm! I’m not a gourmand who loves spending big bucks for tiny pieces of gourmet cheese. I’d rather use local ingredients to make a good hearty meal… I even made this Cottage Cheese at home.
Rice is my comfort food. Correction. HOT Rice is my comfort food. Ever since I bought a non stick pan with a lid, I’ve been making different flavored rice meals in it. And I love it! It takes me 20 minutes from start to finish to make a bowl of hot flavorful rice!
In this recipe, I used frozen peas that I thawed for 10 minutes in warm water. If you’re not a peas fan, substitute with corn or feel free to skip it. The crumbled cottage cheese tastes amazing when you sauté it up nice & crispy. But apparently, not a lot of people are fans of ‘crunchy’ cottage cheese. In that case, you could NOT fry it before. That’s all I’ve got to say now! 😉
Wash the rice well and soak it in warm water for 10 – 15 minutes & then drain out the water. If you’re pressed for time skip the soaking part.
If you’re using fresh peas, wash it well. If you’re using frozen peas, remove from the freezer & soak it in warm water for 10 minutes and then drain out the water.
Crumble the Cottage Cheese (or Feta). Heat 1 Tablespoon of oil or butter or ghee (clarified butter). Add the crumbled cottage cheese & sauté until it is slightly golden brown.
Remove and set aside.
Heat oil and add the dry spices – cinnamon, cloves & bay leaf. Let them fry for a minute until an aroma starts to come from the oil.
Add the onions and green chilli. I had some leftover chilli paste so I used that. But you can just slit the chilli, remove the seeds & use.
Fry the onions until they are slightly golden.
Add the Rice & peas
Add salt & mix
Let it come to a boil. Close with a lid and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the rice is soft & cooked.
Fluff up the rice to mix all the flavor from the spices. I use two forks to help me do that.
Top it off with the crunchy cottage cheese.
Serve hot as it is or with any spicy side dish!
- 1 cup Long Grain Rice
- 1 cup thawed Peas (or Corn)
- 1/2 cup crumbled Cottage Cheese (paneer) or Feta
- 1 inch Cinnamon stick
- 4 Cloves
- 1 long Bay Leaf
- 1 cup chopped Onions
- 2 Green Chilli, slit in between
- 1 TBsp Salt (adjust to taste)
- 2 cups Water
- Vegetable Oil / Ghee
- Wash the rice and soak in warm water for 15 minutes and drain out the water. Skip the soaking if you don’t have the time.
- If using frozen peas, run it through water an thaw it out by soaking in warm water for 5-10 minutes. Then drain out the water.
- In a large (preferably non stick Wok), heat 1 TBsp of Oil or Ghee. Add the crumbled Paneer (Cottage cheese or Feta) and fry till it is golden brown. Remove and set aside.
- In the same pan, add 2 TBsp oil (or ghee). Add the whole spices – cinnamon, cloves & bay leaf. Fry till the oil leaves an aroma.
- Add the onion & chilli. Fry till onions are golden brown.
- Add the rice, peas, water & salt. Mix well. Taste and adjust for salt. Let the water come to a boil.
- Close with a lid, simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the rice is soft and fully cooked through.
- Using 2 forks, fluff up the rice and mix everything together without breaking the rice.
- Serve hot as it is or with any spicy side dish
- I used Basmati Rice or the aromatic long grained Rice. You can use any kind of rice. Just make sure you know how much Water is required for the kind of rice you’re cooking. The amount of water determines the texture of the rice.
- Instead of Peas, you could use sweet corn too. Or feel free to skip it
- If you don’t like the texture of crunchy paneer, just don’t sauté it in the beginning. Just add the crumbled fresh cheese in the end.
- Category: Main Course
- Cuisine: Indian