Inspired by an Indian/Pakistani dish called Tehri, this brown rice and sweet potato pilaf is embellished with green peas and flavored with lots of ginger and cilantro. Transform a humble potato and rice recipe into one that’s hearty enough to serve as a main dish — and lovely to look at, too!
In its original form, Tehri (here’s an all-veg recipe), white rice basmati rice is combined with white potatoes (there may also be a similar rice and potato pilaf and Thai cuisine).
Though a potato and rice recipe sounds rather redundant, the seasonings and embellishments make it delectable in any case, a true comfort food.
I took the general idea of this classic pilaf recipe and revved it up to include the two main ingredients’ extra-nourishing counterparts—brown rice and sweet potatoes.
Like any dish using brown rice, this will take about 40 minutes, but hands-on time is limited, allowing you to prepare any accompaniments at a leisurely pace.
What to serve with brown rice and sweet potato pilaf
Steamed broccoli and a simple tossed salad are enough to round out a meal, as this pilaf is a main dish. Or, a colorful platter with an array of raw vegetables and a creamy vegan dip works nicely as a companion dish as well.
In praise of sweet potatoes
Sweet potatoes are one of the most ancient, nutritious, and valuable food crops of the Americas. Not to diminish the value of white or golden potatoes, but in comparison, sweet potatoes are substantially richer in nutrients.
Sweet potatoes are especially high in vitamin A, have a good amount of B6, and the major minerals. They’re also a good source of fiber. Despite how sweet and rich they taste, they’re surprisingly low calorie and have no fat. Here’s a complete view of the nutritional profile of sweet potatoes.
- Here are lots more delectable vegan sweet potato recipes.
- Find more tasty vegan rice recipes from around the world.
Photos by Hannah Kaminsky, BittersweetBlog.com.
- 2 tablespoons neutral vegetable oil
- 4 scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced, divided
- 3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 cups raw long-grain brown rice, rinsed
- 32-ounce container low-sodium vegetable broth or 4 cups water with 2 vegetable bouillon cubes
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and diced (about 1/2-inch)
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh or squeeze-bottle ginger, or more to taste
- 2 teaspoons good-quality curry powder, or more to taste
- 1 cup frozen green peas, thawed
- 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro, or more, to taste
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Toasted cashew halves for topping, optional
- Sriracha, dried hot pepper flakes, or other hot seasoning, optional
- Heat the oil in a stir-fry pan. Add the white parts of the scallions and garlic. Sauté over medium-low heat until just turning golden.
- Add the rice to the pan along with the broth (or water with bouillon cubes). Bring to a slow boil, then lower the heat, cover and simmer gently until the broth is absorbed, 30 to 35 minutes. If the rice isn’t done to your liking, add 1/2 cup additional water and cook until absorbed; repeat as needed.
- Meanwhile, combine the diced sweet potato in a saucepan with just enough water to cover. Bring to a slow boil, then lower the heat, cover, and simmer gently until just tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and rinse briefly under cool running water.
- Once the rice is done, add the cooked sweet potatoes, then stir in the ginger and curry powder. Turn the heat up to medium-high and cook, stirring, until the ingredients are well blended.
- Add the peas and cook, stirring frequently, another minute or two.
- Season with salt and pepper, stir in the cilantro, and serve. Pass around cashews and or hot seasoning for embellishing individual servings, if desired.
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