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Big Flavors from your Small Appliances

Caramelized Basmati Rice
Appliance: "Pot Style" Rice Cooker - 4 cup capacity and larger. See Note
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   1 cup basmati rice
   3 tablespoons vegetable oil
   4 teaspoons sugar
   4-5 cardamom pods, bruised
   1 inch piece cinnamon stick
   4 whole cloves
   1 bay leaf, crumpled
   1/2 teaspoon salt
   2 cups hot water

NOTE: This recipe is designed for rice cookers that will operate while open, typically “pot” style rice cookers. Fully enclosed rice cookers may require some experimentation.

Wash rice in several changes of water, then add enough clean water to cover and allow to soak for 20 minutes. Drain rice in a fine mesh strainer, shaking it occasionally, while you prepare the remaining ingredients. Try to remove as much water as you can.

Add the oil to inner bowl of your rice cooker and push Cook button. Use white rice setting. When the oil is warm, add the sugar by scattering it over the oil. Do not stir it in. Continue to heat until the sugar caramelizes. Keep a fairly close watch on it. It will remain granulated for a few minutes then suddenly become golden brown and liquify.

Immediately and add spices and bay leaf, again by sprinkling them over the oil. Allow them to fry for about about 15 seconds, then add the drained rice and the salt. Use caution, as the hot oil will splatter if there was much water left in the rice. The caramel may also “crack” at this point, but will melt again as the water evaporates. Fry the rice, stirring occasionally, until fragrant and fully coated in the caramel, 3-5 minutes.

Stir in the water, cover and bring to boil. Remove the lid as soon as the rice boils, and allow it cook, uncovered, for 2 minutes. Stir the rice, replace the lid and allow the cooking cycle to finish. When rice cooker switches to Keep Warm, fluff rice and serve.

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