Coconut Milk Vegetable Pilaf with Tomato Korma

Though I make rice dishes often on a weekend, if there is one recipe I keep trying, it is pulao made entirely with coconut milk. I like the restaurant style white pulao with colorful veggies but the secret of making a fragrant white pulao remained a secret for me, till I found this pulao recipe at Malar’s. The recipe was so simple and full of aromatic spices that I wanted to try it. I used to add tomatoes like in a biryani, but after trying this I realized that was my mistake in making this coconut milk pulao.


Basmati Rice-1 cup
Mixed Vegetables (I used beans, carrot, peas and potato) – 1 cup
Red onion- 1 small size
Green chilies-4
Thick coconut milk (I used canned)- 3 cups
Cumin seeds- 2 tbsp
Garlic- 4 large cloves
Ginger- 1 ” piece

Cinnamon- 1″ Piece
Bay leaf- 3
Cardamom pods-4
Salt- to taste

Sunflower oil- 1 tbsp


I usually slightly steam the veggies before making a pulao as they cook faster and the rice:water measurement is also perfect. Sometimes, if the vegetables are not cooked and the rice is cooked through in a stove top method, adding more water will only make the rice mushy.

Chop the red onion finely. Cut other vegetables into desired shapes. Slit the green chilies till the top, but do not separate it. Finely chop the ginger and garlic (do not use ginger garlic paste).

Wash the rice once and soak it in water for 10 minutes(till the prep is done).

Heat oil in a pan , add cumin seeds, bayleaf, cinnamon stick, cloves, cardamom and stir fry well. Once that is fragrant, add ginger and garlic and stir fry well, but do not brown the garlic(as that will be bitter). Add onions, green chilis and salt and stir fry well. Add the steamed veggies and stir fry for another 2-3 minutes.

Drain the water from the rice, add it to the pan and stir fry along with the veggies.  Transfer the contents of the pan to a pressure cooker vessel,pour the coconut milk (1 part rice: 3 parts coconut milk) to this pot and cook like normal rice. Once the rice is done, slightly fluff it with a  fork. Serve with any spicy gravy as the rice is not spicy.

Since my pressure cooker doubles and triples as idli cooker and pressure cooker, Sago vadam maker, Kali Kinder (what a name), I do not directly cook in the pressure cooker, but transfer it to the cooking vessel and keep it inside the cooker once the frying is done. You can directly cook it on the pressure cooker too!

This Coconut Milk Pulao is going to Nupur’s Blog Patrol

We had the pulao with Plain Tomato Korma.

Ingredients for Tomato Korma:

This is my version of korma given with Biryanis at the restaurants. If you want it plain, just grind the ingredients and simmer it till the raw smell disappears. If not, you can add tomato and onions as veggies in the korma.

Ripe Tomato-1
Chopped onion- 1/4 cup
Salt- to taste
Turmeric Powder- 1/4 tsp
OIl- 1 tsp
Cilantro- to garnish

To grind:
Poppy seeds- 1/2 tsp
Coriander seeds- 2 tbsp
Ginger Garlic Paste- 1 tsp
Chopped onion- couple of chunks (4-5 slices)
Red chilies- 4
Cinnamon-1″ piece
Cashew nuts- 1 tsp
Coconut- 1 tsp


Blend the ingredients to a powder first and then add some water and grind it to a smooth paste with 1/4 cup of water. Heat oil in a pan and stir fry onions and tomatoes. Add salt and turmeric powder. Add about 1/4 cup of water and let the veggies simmer for 5 minutes.

Pour the paste into the pan and let it simmer for 10 minutes, till the raw smell disappears. Garnish with cilantro.
Serve with rice or dosas or rotis.

This tomato korma is going to CWS-Coriander Seeds Event at RV’s, an event Started by Priya.

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18 Comments to “Coconut Milk Vegetable Pilaf with Tomato Korma”

  1. BDSN says:

    This is an unusual but sounds very interesting kind of combo!!!

  2. Nupur says:

    I can almost taste the richness and smell the aroma of that pulao- thanks for a terrific entry!

    Now I am very curious- what is Kali Kinder?? 😀

  3. Cham says:

    I don’t add veggies and we call it Tengal paal sadaam or ghee rice! Very rich rice sounds good with tomato kurma!

  4. indosungod says:

    Oh Yes! those white pulaos are very flavorful and with veggies studded in them delicious.

  5. Champa says:

    I use coconut milk in pulav too. Nice version.

  6. Pavani says:

    Wow!! That’s a very flavorful pulao recipe. I’ve to try this soon.. I also love the restaurant style tomato kurma.. Thanks for sharing these recipes.

  7. says:

    Lovely combination of ingredients.Nice presentation too.

  8. Srimathi says:

    I am very hungry and thinking of this combi food makes me even more hungry.

  9. Padma says:

    Nice combo… very flavorful rice… please pass me some :)

  10. Uma says:

    Yummy combo! Looks so delicious :)

  11. Rupali says:

    such a refreshing combo! coconut milk must lend a very unique flavor to the pulao! what is the kali kinder thing u mentioned??

  12. Whata flavourful Pulao dear!!!! am hungry!!!!

  13. notyet100 says:

    yummy combo,..:-)

  14. Oraphan says:

    Yum! This rice dish looks fantastic! It sounds like my kind of food, I LOVE rice with coconut milk and lots of veggies. Can’t wait to give it a try:)

  15. Hi sowjanya…how r u doing??well i love coconut milk rice and i usually do without adding vegetables….your rice looks very delicious and full of flavours…will try your recipe soon….

  16. such a rich and tasty dish..great combination

  17. Nandini says:

    I tried your pulao and tomato kurma recipes and they came out great!! Thanks for sharing your recipe!!

  18. I tried this one out today and posted it on my blog. It came simply wonderfully, thank you very much for this wonderful recipe.

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