Spiced jollof rice

This comforting rice dish is inspired by the west African favourite, jollof.
This comforting rice dish is inspired by the west African favourite, jollof. Photo: Katrina Meynink
Difficulty
Easy
Dietary
Gluten-free

Dusky jollof rice with its insistent and deliberate spicy heat is delicious on its own, or serve as a side to any protein.

Ingredients

For the puree

3 tbsp ricebran oil

5 large ripe tomatoes, cored and chopped

1 red onion, peeled and roughly chopped

1 tbsp ground chipotle

1 tbsp roasted curry powder

1 x 5cm knob ginger, peeled and roughly chopped

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1 red capsicum, cored and roughly chopped

For the rice

2 cups basmati rice

2½ cups chicken stock (or vegetable stock if vegetarian)

For the topping

1½ tbsp ricebran oil (or other flavourless oil)

2 brown onions, sliced

⅓ cup slivered almonds

⅓ cup coriander leaves, roughly chopped

⅓ cup flat leaf parsley leaves, roughly chopped

Method

Add puree ingredients to a blender and blitz until smooth. In a medium saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the puree and bring to a simmer. Gently simmer until most of the liquid has reduced and the sauce develops a sweetness (about 20 minutes).

Add the rice and cook over low heat until the grains begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add 2 cups of stock and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring regularly to prevent the grains from catching. If needed, add the remaining ½ cup of stock and cook for a further 5 minutes or until cooked through and the liquid has been absorbed.

While the rice is cooking, prepare the topping. Place a frying pan over low-medium heat, add 1 tbsp of oil and sweat the sliced onion, stirring regularly, until completely soft (about 15 minutes). Remove the onion and set aside. Return the frying pan to the heat, add the remaining half tablespoon of oil and the slivered almonds and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until the nuts are toasted and brown. Set aside.

Spoon the cooked rice into a serving bowl. Season generously with salt and top with the onions, almonds and herbs. Serve warm.