I adore curries, there is something so comforting about the aroma of the spices wafted out from the kitchen and the mouth-watering anticipation they generate.
They are best, I find, when made in a huge pot so second helpings are easy to come by. This Vegetable Biriyani recipe if a favourite of mine to cook for a crowd and leave on the table for people to serve ‘family style.’ I also use this recipe as a meal prep because its great to take for lunches throughout the week.
I’ve been trying to cut out highly processed foods where I can which means making things from scratch. In the past I probably would have reached for a jar of ready-made curry sauce to make my life easier, I am getting so much joy out of making my own recipes and adjusting the balance of spices and favours to suit our tastes.
It’s also so much easier to know exactly what is going into your food and cutting out all those ingredients you can’t even pronounce and clearly were made in a lab. I genuinely feel so much better for eating a more plant-based diet and adding more whole foods into that diet and the scales have shown the difference. I have lost a stone in 7 weeks, but I have been eating lots and to be honest not exercising at all- although I really must start doing that.
Below is my recipe for a warming Vegetable Biriyani that will help you keep feeling full without all the added calories and fats from a takeaway meal.
2 medium onions, 1 roughly chopped and 1 finely chopped
2 large roasted red peppers in brine, drained and chopped
1 tsp ginger (I use ginger paste but ground ginger would work too)
2 large garlic cloves
low calorie cooking spray
½ tsp paprika
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp garam masala
½ tsp turmeric
1 red chilli, finely chopped (deseed if you like things milder)
250g dried brown rice
1 tin chopped tomatoes
½ tbsp tomato purée
1 vegetable stock cube
100g broccoli, cut into small florets
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
100g frozen peas
- Chop the finely chopped onion, roasted red peppers, ginger and garlic as finely as you can.
- Spray pan with low calorie cooking spray and fry the chopped onion for 5 minutes. Add the pounded pepper and onion mixture, the rest of the spices and chilli and cook for a few minutes.
- Add the rice and stir to coat the grains in the spices.
- Stir in the chopped tomatoes, tomato purée, stock cube, broccoli, pepper and mushrooms. Pour in 500ml boiling water and bring to the boil.
- Cover with a lid, turn the heat to low and cook for roughly 25 minutes, until most of the water has been absorbed and the rice is nearly cooked.
- Add the peas to the pan without stirring them in, replace the lid and cook for a further 5 minutes.
This recipe makes 5 servings and is roughly 365 calories per serving.