Spiced game pilaf

Spiced game pilaf

By
From
The Frugal Cook
Serves
2-3
Photographer
Mike Cooper

A pilaf is a great way to use up leftover scraps of meat but needs plenty of spice and texture to make it more than a dumping ground for leftovers.This is a master recipe you can vary in any number of ways depending on what you have in your storecupboard.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
2 tablespoons oil
1 onion
1 teaspoon each ground cumin and coriander
1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
6 medium sized mushrooms, wiped clean and chopped small
75-100g chopped dried fruit, such as apricots, figs or prunes (optional)
100ml basmati rice, measured in a jug
200ml good flavoured stock, preferably made from the carcass of the bird in question
a small handful nuts and/or seeds, e.g.chopped cashews, almonds or brazil nuts (optional)
250g lean cooked game - pheasant, partridge or duck - or even turkey
2 tablespoons finely chopped green herbs, such as coriander, parsley and/or mint
wedges orange or lemon

Method

  1. Heat the oil and fry the chopped onion over a moderately high heat until the edges are beginning to turn brown (about 5-6 minutes). Stir in the spices, cook for a few seconds then add the garlic and the mushrooms and dried fruit if using. Cook for a couple of minutes then add the rice, stir and pour over the stock. Bring to the boil, cover and turn the heat down and cook until the stock is absorbed. Turn the heat off and leave the rice to rest for б minutes. Dry fry the nuts and/or seeds if using in a small frying pan until lightly browned and beginning to release their fragrance. Tip onto a plate and set aside. Add a tablespoon of oil to the pan and fry the chopped game until slightly crispy. Fork the seeds, fried game and herbs through the pilaf and serve with wedges of orange or lemon for squeezing over the dish.

Variations

  • You can make a more spring-like pilaf based on chicken and spring vegetables such as peas, broad beans, broccoli and asparagus garnished with lighter nuts like almonds and pistachios.

Thrifty tip

  • Look out for 'bin ends' in your local health food store. It's a cheap way to buy small amounts of nuts and seeds.
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