Bridging the divide - Shrimp Pulao

It has been brought to my attention by two avid readers of this blog (that would be my husband and my brother but I still take them seriously :-)) that I have been partial to vegetarian food on this blog. And it is true, there are only two non vegetarian recipes compared to some fifty vegetarian ones. How did this happen? For sure I was making seafood and meat dishes at home; I just didn't blog about them for some reason. Well it's time to bridge this widening gap, because in my family we love our seafood. Too many days without it and we get get restless!

Since red chillies and coconut are the most commonly used ingredients in any Konkani masala, this pulao makes a refreshing change with its base of cilantro and green chillies. This 'hirwa' (green) masala is super versatile; you can make a big batch, store it in the freezer and use as required in a variety of dishes. I use it in shrimp curry, stuffed fish (like patrani macchi) and with a slight variation, in a mixed vegetable curry that I will post soon because I do not want to alienate my vegetarian readers entirely!

This pulao can be made with a lot of variations; you can add some grated coconut to the cilantro masala while grinding, you can add a little coconut milk to cook the rice along with water, you can use carrots instead of peas...whatever strikes your fancy.


KOLAMBI BHAAT (Shrimp Pulao with Peas)
(serves 2-3)
For pulao -
1 1/2 cups Basmati rice
1/2 cup green peas
2 large onions, finely chopped
a pinch of turmeric
15-20 medium size shrimp
salt to taste
lemon juice
For masala -
1 1/2 tsp ginger-garlic paste
2-3 green chillies (don't use too many since the whole garam masala adds heat as well)
1" piece of cinnamon
1 black cardamom
2-3 cloves
1 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp black cumin seeds (shah jeera, or substitute cumin)
2-3 peppercorns
1 small bunch of cilantro (discard tough stems and use the rest)
10-12 mint leaves
For garnish -
finely chopped cilantro and grated coconut

Wash, peel and devein shrimp. Place on a kitchen towel and pat dry. Sprinkle salt and lemon juice over top and keep aside.

Wash rice in 2-3 changes of water. Grind all ingredients for masala into a fine paste using very little water.

In a dutch oven or sauce pan heat about 3 tablespoons of oil. Add onion and saute till it turns reddish brown. Add the ground masala and saute till it loses its moisture. Next add shrimp and stir for about 2 minutes. (Don't saute shrimp for too long as they become chewy).

Add rice, peas and turmeric and season to taste. Mix well, taking care not to break the grain. Add 2 3/4 cups of water and bring to a boil on medium heat. Then lower heat, cover and cook until water has almost evaporated.

Place a griddle (tawa) over flame, then rest sauce pan over griddle. Cover and cook till rice is done. This prevents rice from sticking to the pan as well as cooks the pulao on 'dum' (steam). Garnish with chopped cilantro and coconut and serve hot.

Tags: sungta


Blogger Priya Bhaskaran said...

Must try:)

5:00 PM  
Blogger Nabeela said...

I've been craving shrimps a lot lately. This dish looks like the perfect way to go about making it for my next week's menu.

5:00 PM  
Blogger Prema Sundar said...

The picture looks tempting..

5:30 PM  
Blogger Shah cooks said...

This is a wonderful version of shrimp fried rice. i have to try this and let u know.thanks.

6:24 PM  
Blogger Andrew McAllister said...

Sounds yummy. Thanks!

To Love, Honor and Dismay

6:35 PM  
Blogger archana said...

I grew up in a coastal town, so seafood is my kind of non veg. Thank you for the recipe Ashwini. I just read your two other non veg posts and liked them both, more fish and prawns please ! Nice photo too.

9:58 PM  
Blogger Sudha said...

They look so yummy ashwini...just a doubt can i substitute prawn with chicken?I love shrimps but unfortunatly im allergic to shrimp..:-(.Thanks for sharing....

11:16 PM  
Blogger Vaishali said...

I'm sure I would have loved it, had I not been a vegetarian. :)

7:52 AM  
Blogger KA said...

Srimp pulao looks absolutely delicious!
Perfect timing I should say I just had it yesterday at a get together :-)

7:59 AM  
Blogger Krithika said...

I have always assumed that you are a vegetarian :-) I can try the vegetarian version of this. Thanks for sharing this recipe

12:02 PM  
Blogger Tina Jennifer D'Silva said...

Wow Ashwini... the pulao looks delicious.

7:50 PM  
Blogger indianadoc said...

Hmm...all of us gone 'prawny' these days?!!my biriyani,archana's pad thai and u'r pulao...wonderful feast...Hmm...I too have always felt that u dont post many sea food recipe...wd love to know more of them.

1:43 AM  
Blogger FH said...


8:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...'s too Tempting.

9:56 PM  
Blogger Meeta K. Wolff said...

Ash! WOW! I am into all sorts of pulao recipes at the moment. This looks devine and I am drooling! I have bookmarked it and will report back with a verdict!

5:21 AM  
Blogger Mandira said...

This looks delicious. I have to try this soon. When I was in Manipal, I had Shrimp fried rice for lunch atleast once a week. Thanks for sharing.

8:17 AM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Priya, Nabeela, Shaheen - let me know hoe you like it
Prema, Andrew - thanks
Archana - will do, have many shrimp/ fish recipes in my kitty :-)
Sudhav - the masala should work with chicken just as well as shrimp. You could try marinating the chicken in the green masala instead of adding directly. If you do try out let me know how you like it (as I have never made it myself)
Vaish, Krithika, KA, Tina - thanks
Shynee - I know, shrimp seems to be the flavor of the week
FH - thank you, same to you
Anon, Mandira - thanks
Meeta - I am sure you will like this one..aromatic but not too spicy. Let me know how you like it

9:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This looks sooo good! I think I'm going to make it this week. Now if only you had a recipe with the mustard greens and bitter melon I was compelled to buy at the store today! Any suggestions? :)

4:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

sounds great. i will try this weekend

6:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hai , I tried This one , hummmmmmmmmm yummy. Thank you very much

10:25 PM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Hey Anon, thanks! Glad you liked it.

10:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


The shrimp pulao looks delicious. Can you also put up a recipe for your mother's Shrimp Curry? Would love to see that.

2:41 PM  
Blogger Manasi said...

Hi Ashwini, Someone has been copying and using ur pic on their blog. Pl check this link

It also looks like many other pics are 'lifted' from other blogs!!

12:09 PM  
Blogger Sheetal Kanago said...

Hi Ashwini,

I tried your pulao today at it was fantastic! My hubby (who hates sea food) loved it too.

Thanks a lot,

11:52 PM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Hi Sheetal, welcome to FFT. And glad you & hubby liked the pulao.

11:56 AM  

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