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Sunrice - Lamb Mince Pulao

Updated: 13 hours ago

When I was growing up in India, we only ate Basmati when we had special guests coming over, which was not often. In those days Basmati had a fragrance that one could smell from a few doors away and we would often have nosy neighbours knocking on our doors asking if we were expecting guests as they could smell 'Basmati' being cooked.

Since moving to Australia over a decade ago, I have struggled to find a good quality Basmati that not only has longer grains but also is aromatic. So, when the folks from 'Sunrice' sent me Basmati rice that is grown in India, I was excited. And I used the rice to make a Pulao with Lamb Mince and garnished it with Ghee roasted cashewnuts & raisins.


We all know that good quality Rice is the key to a great-tasting Pulao or Biryani and I am glad to report that the Lamb Pulao I made not only looked and tasted great but had a wonderful aroma that reminded me of home. Long grains that had the khila hua (fluffy) look and feel and the trademark fragrance that excellent Basmati has.


Too bad my neighbors in Sydney are not as nosy or friendly to be knocking on my door. But I hope that the aroma wafting from my kitchen today is making them hungry.


Lamb Mince Pulao - Cooking Time 45 minutes, Serves 6




  • 2 cups Sunrice Basmati Rice

  • 250 gms Lamb Mince (You can use Chicken, Beef, Pork, or even Vegan mince)

  • 1 cup green peas

  • 2 large Onions finely chopped

  • 3 tomatoes finely chopped

  • 2 tbsp tomato paste

  • 1 tbsp Ginger Garlic paste

  • 1/2 cup Greek or plain yogurt at room temperature (optional) 

  • 4 cloves

  • 3 Bay leaves 

  • 2 Star anise

  • 2 tsp red chilli powder

  • 2 tsp turmeric powder

  • 2 tsp coriander powder

  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds

  • 2 Cassia bark or 1 stick of Cinnamon

  • 5 - 6 green Cardamoms

  • 2 black Cardamoms (optional but they add a lovely Smokey flavor)

  • Salt as per taste

  • 1 tbsp Ghee or vegetable oil

  • 1/2 cup Raw unsalted Cashews

  • 1/2 cup Sultanas or Raisins

  • 1 tbsp chopped Coriander.

  • 4 cups + 1 tbsp water to cook the rice. The ratio of the rice vs water is 1: 2

  • Juice of 1 lemon



  1. Wash and soak 2 cups of rice in plain water for 15 minutes, this will ensure that the Pulao is fluffy and the rice cooks evenly.

  2. In a thick-bottomed large pan (so rice has space to cook) add Ghee or Vegetable oil. Once the oil/ghee is hot, reduce the flame and fry the cashews and raisins till lightly golden brown. Remove them and keep them aside.

  3. In the same pan add cumin seeds, bay leaves, cloves, cardamoms, cassia bark, and lightly fry for 10 seconds. Then add the ginger garlic paste and fry for another 10 seconds.

  4. Add the chopped Onions and cook for 7-10 minutes till the onions have caramelized. Then add the lamb mince and mix well, stirring occasionally for another 10 minutes so the meat doesn't burn.

  5. Once the meat has browned, add the tomatoes, tomato paste, and salt and cook for another 15 minutes.

  6. Now add all the spice powders, mixing them in the Onion/Tomato mixture, and cook for 5 minutes till you can smell all the aromas. Add the yogurt if using it and stir well.

  7. Drain the rice, add it to the pan, and coat it with all spices. Keep stirring to ensure the rice does not burn or stick to the pan.

  8. Add the water, stir well, sprinkle the lemon juice, add the Star anise, and green peas, and salt if needed.

  9. Once the water has almost evaporated, cover the rice and let it cook till all the water has been evaporated from the pan.

  10. Add the raisins, Cashews, and chopped coriander, cover the rice again, and let it sit for 10 minutes before fluffing it up with a fork and serving it.

  11. Serve the rice hot with a raita.

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