Cumin Rice

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The quest to cooking the perfect rice, is a journey both immensely satisfying (when successful!) and painfully arduous (when not!). Rice is one of my absolute favourite foods ever, and I cook it pretty much all the time. Yet I have too often felt like a pendulum swinging between success and failure. I'm saving you from this balancing act, as I reckon this recipe will give you the right steer to reaching the nirvana of a well cooked bowl of rice! 

This cumin rice hits a beautifully delicate balance between the scents of basmati, cumin and turmeric. Each strand of rice is fluffy and long, and firm enough to hold its shape, yet soft enough to soak up any yummy curries it is accompanying. This dish is perfect to liven up a weeknight supper where you might have a few leftover curries to get through, or as the star of the show for a dinner with friends, where I will often fry a few onions and sprinkle on top for added deliciousness!

Serves: 4

Time: 15 min cooking (+ 1 hour to soak the rice)


  • 2 cups of basmati rice

  • 2 cups of cold water

  • 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1 teaspoon of salt

  • 1 tablespoon of coconut or vegetable oil

  • 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric powder


  1. To prepare the rice, soak in cold water for 1 hour, this helps to lengthen the strands of rice and make them more fluffy

  2. Drain the rice after 1 hour

  3. In a pan heat up the oil, once hot add the cumin seeds, and gently brown

  4. Add 2 cups of cold water, salt, turmeric and the bay leaf to the pan with the cumin and leave to boil

  5. Once the water is boiling, add in the drained rice

  6. Leave to boil for another 2-3 minutes

  7. Turn the heat to low, put the lid on and leave to cook for a further 5-10 minutes which allows the rice to cook in the steam

  8. Serve steaming hot!