You are short on time and want to do a quick one??? Here is the simple, healthy and delicious pulao.. If you are looking for a short grain but prefer the taste of rice.. Try this short grain – Varagu / Kodo Millet.. I made this for my family and they were very pleased and loved it.. Makes perfect for travel and lunchbox…Varagu is a type of short grain that I have been introduced recently.. It looks very much like rice but it is about 1/3 the size.. It is very healthy.. Varagu is a grain that can grow without much baby sitting from the farmers and this can be grown without Pesticides.. This makes it one of the favorite crops of the farmers. I have used polished varagu, you can use the brown one also. Also it tastes very close to rice, so it is very easy to be included in the diet..
Varagu / Kodo Millet - 1 cup
Warm Water - 2 cups
Green Chili - 2
Sombu / Fennel Seeds - 1/2 tea spoon
Peas - 1 cup
Coriander Leaves - 1/4 cup (chopped)
Cashew - 10
Ghee - 1 table spoon (can use oil also)
Cloves - 5
Cinnamon Stick - 1 inch piece
Bay Leaf - 1
Star Anise - 1
Salt - 1 1/2 tea spoons
Oil - 1/4 tea spoon
Garlic - 1 table spoon (grated)
Ginger - 1 tea spoon (grated)
Onion - 1 cup (chopped)
Garam Masala / Pulao Masala - 1 tea spoon
Wash the varagu well. Add warm water and 1/4 tea spoon oil and cook it covered in the microwave for 12 minutes.
Set aside. Once little cooled, fluff it with a fork. Let it cool completely.
It is actually best to cook the varagu a few hours before the actual preparation as it will absorb water as it cools and will become completely fluffy and each grain will be seperate.
Cook the peas in microwave for 2 minutes and set aside
Heat ghee in a pan and add fennel seeds, bay leaf, cloves, cinnamon stick and star anise
Add cashew and once it becomes golden, add ginger, garlic and green chili and saute for 10 seconds
Add onions and salt and allow it to cook until the onions are translucent
Add pulao masala and saute for 30 seconds
Add the peas and mix it well and now add the cooked varagu and reduce the flame to low and mix all this well
Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot!!!
Details of Varagu / Kodo Millet – from wiki – “Kodo millet is a nutritious grain and a good substitute to rice or wheat. The grain is composed of 11% of protein, providing 9 grams/100 g consumed. It is an excellent source of fibre at 10 grams (37-38%), as opposed to rice, which provides 0.2/100 g, and wheat, which provides 1.2/100 g. An adequate fibre source helps combat the feeling of hunger. Kodo millet contains 66.6 g of carbohydrates and 353 kcal per 100 g of grain, comparable to other millets. It also contains 3.6 g of fat per 100 g. It provides minimal amounts of iron, at 0.5/100 mg, and minimal amounts of calcium, and 27/100 mg. Kodo millets also contain high amounts of polyphenols, an antioxidant compound. The kodo millet can survive well on marginal soils; var. scrobiculatum requires very little water in order to grow, and thus has very good drought tolerance. It can be cultivated without an irrigation system. Farmyard manures provide adequate nutrients in terms of adding fertilizer, but kodo millets can still survive on low-nutrient soils. The wild variety is better suited to wetter conditions, and can tolerate flooded areas and swampy ground” Read more here