Kashmir Morel Mushroom Pulao

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The morel mushrooms are a wild variety of mushrooms rich in taste and quite flavorsome. Kashmir Morels are edible dried wild mushrooms and are savored by gourmet chefs for their smoky and nutty flavor. This specie of mushroom is rare and wild and is not easily available. An interesting fact about morel mushrooms is that it pops up at places which are struck by lightning. It is very difficult to grow for commercial purpose and is generally found in the high altitude meadows and mountain ranges. Due to these reasons it is very expensive (costs between Rs.15000-20000/kg).

Locally Morel Mushrooms are known as Gucci and Kanginch and are prepared in a variety of ways. Two popular dishes with Gucci are gucch yakhni and gucch pulao. I will be sharing an easy to make recipe for Kashmiri Gucci Pulao that will serve four.

So let’s get started!

Ingredients:                                                                                            

10 pieces dried black morel mushrooms

1 cup basmati rice, pre-soaked in water

3 table spoon ghee

1 bay leaf

4-5 black cardamoms

1 small stick cinnamon

1 piece ginger, sliced thinly

1 tea spoon cumin seeds

1.5 cup water

Salt to taste

1/2 lemon

Method

Wash the gucchi in lukewarm water to get rid of all the extra dirt. Do not wash it vigorously.

Soak the gucchi in 1 cup luke warm water for 15 minutes. Strain the water.

Do not throw it away. This flavor infused water will be used to cook the rice.

Take the gucchi and slice them into thick rounds.

In a wok or deep base kadhai add ghee, bay leaf, cardamom, cinnamon and cumin seeds. Let it splutter.

Add ginger and sauté for a few seconds. Add the sliced gucchi and sauté it for 1 minute.

Now add the soaked rice, the gucchi soaked water and 1/2 cup of normal water.

Squeeze 4-5 drops of lemon juice in the mixture and let it cook for 20 minutes.

Serve it hot with a bowl of raita.

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