How to make Mushroom pilau rice

“The first time I made this was for a vegetarian friend who complained that every time she went to a dinner party she was given mushroom risotto, said MasterChef 2010 winner Dhruv Baker.

“I am delighted to say that she loved the flavours of the earthy mushrooms along with the wonderful spices – as far from an average mushroom risotto as you could imagine,” he added.

How to make Mushroom pilau rice


  • 250g basmati rice
  • 6 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 6 green cardamom pods
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 10 cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 125g white mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • ½ tbsp. salt
  • 500ml water
  • Small pinch of saffron
  • 2-3 tbsp flaked almonds (optional)


Start by rinsing the rice in cold water until the water runs clear. Set aside in a sieve to allow as much water as possible to drain off.

Heat half the oil in a large pan and add the cardamom pods, cinnamon sticks, cloves and bay leaves; stir for 1 minute. Add half the sliced onion and cook for 5 minutes, then add the mushrooms and garlic and fry for another 10 minutes.

Add the rice and salt and stir until the rice is well coated in the oil. Add the water and bring to the boil.

After about 4-5 minutes much of the water will have evaporated. Stir in the saffron strands, cover and reduce the heat to the lowest possible setting. Cook for 12-15 minutes, or until the rice is tender.

Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in a pan and fry the remaining onion slices until golden brown. Remove from the pan and drain on kitchen paper.

To serve, scatter the fried onion over the top of the pilau along with the flaked almonds, if using. 

Tilda is once again partnering with the World Food Programme and donating a meal for every bag of Pure Basmati Dry (5kg, 1kg) and TSB sold in the UK to new and expectant mums in Bangladesh.

To support the campaign, a host of personalities have donated recipes to create the Mums Helping Mums cookbook, which can be downloaded at

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