Rice, being staple food, takes different avatars in our kitchen. Brown rice is nutritious no doubt, but plain white rice is the versatile one for cooking various rice dishes. The art of cooking rice lies in retaining the grainy texture even while the rice is cooked through. This was well-briefed by Valli here. For lunch or variety rice, I normally use an electric rice cooker. The quantity of water added makes all the difference.

We make various types of one pot dishes with rice – mixed rice, pulav, biryani, fried rice etc…Variety rice is prepared by mixing the ingredients with cooked rice. At times the rice is sauteed along with vegetables and spices and at times, we cook the rice separately and just mix the vegetables and/or spices in it.

Pulav is cooked in two ways. One can either make it in pressure cooker with the rice and vegetables together or cook the rice separately with less water to ¾ th stage and bake it along with spices and vegetables for a while.

Biryani rice is cooked along with ground masala and coconut milk.

Fried rice is sauteed gently with veggies and spices. This one is less spicy and needs a spicy side dish to accompany.

This post is dedicated to Spinach/Palak Rice. The greens are ground and sauteed on medium flame and mixed with rice. Adding veggies makes it colorful. Even kids who hesitate to eat greens will love this rice. The beauty of the dish is in preparing it grainy and not mushy. Make sure that the raw smell of spinach goes while retaining the green color.

Palak/Spinach Rice

Recipe: Spinach/Palak Rice (Basmati rice flavoured with spinach, aromatic spices and fresh herbs & cooked in coconut milk)
Prep & Cooking Time: 45 minutes
Serves: 3 People
Recipe Level: Intermediary
Recipe/Post by: Viji
1 cup Basmati Rice
1 bunch Spinach/Palak
1 Red Onion
2 Green Chillies
1 small wedge Ginger
1 cup each of fresh/frozen Sweet Corns and Green Peas
1 tsp Butter
1 cup Coconut Milk
¼ cup water
A pinch of Sugar
Salt to taste

For Tadka/Tempering:
1 tsp Ghee
1 tsp Oil
1 each – Cinnamon, Cloves, Bay Leaf & Cardamom

Spices Needed:
1 tbsp Garam Masala Powder
½ tsp Turmeric Powder

For Garnishing:
Few Fried Cashews

Special Utensils:
Veggie Chopper
Electric Rice Cooker

Bunch of Fresh Palak/Spinach

  1. Wash and cook the basmati rice with butter, coconut milk, water and salt in electric rice cooker. Once done spread on a plate to cool.
  2. Steam cook the corn and peas till soft.
  3. Wash and chop the palak with other ingredients (onion, green chillies and ginger) given above in the chopper.
  4. In a skillet temper as the ingredients in sequence. Add the palak paste and fry till the water evaporates. Adding sugar helps retain the green color.
  5. Add the veggies – corn and peas - to it and saute.
  6. Now add the spices and saute till they are evenly folded with the vegetables. Finally add the rice and saute till they mixed well. Serve hot or cold with your favorite raita.

Special Notes/Tips:
  • If chopper is not available use the multi mixer but do not grind to a paste.
  • If electric rice cooker is not available use pressure cooker, but do not use the weight to cover the steam outlet. Instead close the nozzle placing a cup upside down and cook the rice on medium heat for 30-40 minutes. Switch off and after 5 minutes spread the rice to cool.
  • Garlic lovers can add 1 or 2 cloves of garlic along with spinach and other ingredients while chopping.
  • Adding coconut milk will enhance taste.
  • If garam masala powder is not available, powder equal portions of cinnamon, cloves and green cardmom and use it.
  • Once prepared transfer to a greased baking dish and bake for 5 minutes at 175 degree Celcius. This enhances the flavor.

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  1. Kitchen Flavours // 11 June 2009 at 17:10  

    Oh wow healthy, nutritious and yum....

  2. Gita // 11 June 2009 at 18:29  

    Thats a delicious and healthy rice...love it :)

  3. Madhuram // 11 June 2009 at 19:07  

    I too prepare spinach rice but more of South Indian style. I'm going to try this one definitely and the idea of baking is new to me. I guess it's like dum biriyani concept right.

  4. Vani // 11 June 2009 at 19:49  

    Love the addition of coconut milk here. Looks yum, Viji!

  5. Vanamala // 11 June 2009 at 23:17  

    Nice one...love the color of dish

  6. Nags // 12 June 2009 at 12:57  

    never tried this one!

  7. Lakshmi // 12 June 2009 at 13:36  

    Palak rice looks very appetising and picture perfect with those cashews.

  8. Sum // 12 June 2009 at 14:16  

    I had wanted to learn this one... And baking the rice is a new thing that i should try.... Thanks!

  9. rekhas kitchen // 12 June 2009 at 22:34  


  10. Hari Chandana // 13 June 2009 at 22:32  

    Lovely spinach rice..looks delicious..nice clicks!!! :)

  11. Zarine // 15 June 2009 at 21:22  

    The picture looks good enough to eat. Will try in a pot (don't either have a rice cooker or a well working pressure cooker).

    Thanks Viji

  12. Srivalli // 16 June 2009 at 22:22  

    wow beautiful colour and very tempting.. Viji..

  13. meeso // 17 June 2009 at 04:10  

    That looks so mouthwatering and healthy! I love it :)

  14. Stranded // 30 September 2009 at 20:49  

    I am doing this today. Am so excited!

  15. egglesscooking // 1 December 2009 at 02:23  

    Viji Akka, I tried this today and it was so good. My husband, my mother-in-law liked it too. This is going to be a regular in our house.