Shrimp Pulav – Guest Post at Healthful Pursuit

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Even in the days when my life was less about food and more about meetings or projects, dinner was always an important part of the day. Eating out was always an option but enjoying a comforting warm meal at the end of a busy day was relaxing. Even though I was not a big foodie, cooking had always been a fun activity for me; it was like a stress buster that helped me empty my mind and get ready for the next day.


I was not very creative with cooking but I knew how to flavor a dish with spices. My most common meal for weeknights was Pulav or Pilaf.  Flavored rice works as a great vehicle for any vegetable, meat or fish. Although brown rice would also work great, it’s always best to use long grain basmati white rice and cook with whole spices for the best aroma.


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Few weeks back, Leanne Vogel, the author of the blog Healthful Pursuit had approached some of us requesting to keep her blog active while she was busy packing, moving and unpacking. She is adorable, friendly, approachable and has a priceless smile! She is a yogi, talks about healthy, nutritional food, loves travelling and she eats gluten free.


Recently she took a trip to India, an adventurous one I must say! Check out all the posts she wrote about her trip. She is a brave girl and she loves spicy Indian food. So, I thought why not share with her something that is hearty, flavorful, filled with aromatic spices and quick. Good for me, she loved the idea of shrimp pulav and gave a big ‘yes’ to it 🙂


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My husband is not a picky eater but when it comes to seafood, he will eat only certain types of seafood and it has to be prepared in certain ways. Hence, I used cooked shrimp cause that’s what he mostly prefers. It can definitely be replaced with fresh shrimp or prawn.


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While cooking with shrimp, be careful not to overcook it or else, it tastes chewy and rough. I sautéed the shrimp separately with spices, cooked the rice separately and just when rice was almost done, I mixed the shrimp with it very lightly. Then, I covered it and let it rest for about 15 minutes for the rice to get cooked completely.


The ingredient list and the direction list might make it sound like a lengthy task but trust me, it’s not. I also feel that such dishes taste more flavorful the next day. So make a lot and enjoy some leftovers the day after or make it in advance for those lazy weekend nights.


Check out the recipe at Leanne’s blog and thank you Leanne for asking. It’s always a pleasure to cook for a friend.

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Shrimp Pulav

Yield: 4 people as main course
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes


  • 1-1/2 white basmati rice, long grained
  • couple handful of shrimp, cleaned with head and tail removed
  • 2 medium size potatoes, sliced lengthwise about 1.5 cm thick
  • 1 medium size tomato, thinly sliced
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • couple cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1- inch ginger, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh mint
  • 2 tablespoons ghee, clarified butter
  • 3 cups of water

List of spices

  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 star anise
  • 2 to 3 tej pataa, dried bay leaves
  • 2 to 3 green cardamom, smashed lightly so that the seeds and pods separate
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • salt


  1. Put the clean shrimp in a mixing bowl, season with some salt, add 1 teaspoon garam masala powder and let it marinate for about 15 minutes.
  2. Wash the rice and soak it in water for about 15 minutes.
  3. Use a deep saucepan that has a tight fitting lid and heat 1 teaspoon ghee in medium heat.
  4. Add cinnamon stick, star anise, cardamom and bay leaves. Let it infuse the ghee for about a minute.
  5. Now, add the marinated shrimp to the pan and sauté for about 5 minutes.
  6. Take it out from the pan and keep it aside to be used later.
  7. In the same pan, pour 1 more teaspoon of ghee and add ginger, garlic and sauté them.
  8. After about a minute, add the onions and cook until they’re golden brown in color.
  9. Then, add the potatoes, season with salt and cook for about 2 minutes.
  10. Add the tomatoes, 1 teaspoon garam masala powder, chili powder and sauté for about 2 more minutes.
  11. Drain the rice, add it to the pan and give it a stir.
  12. Season it with salt, add the chopped mint and sauté for couple more minutes.
  13. Next, add water, give it a mix and bring the heat to high. Once the water starts boiling, bring the heat down to medium and let it simmer until the water is almost absorbed. This should take about 15 minutes.
  14. Add the sautéed shrimp to the pan, lightly mix it with the rice, stop the heat and cover the pan with the lid.
  15. After about 10 minutes, fluff the rice using a fork.
  16. Add chopped cilantro and serve it warm with some cold yogurt or salad on the side.


Dried nuts like cashew or almonds would works as a great garnish on this simple meal.
You can make this in advance, and re-heat it in the microwave for couple of seconds before serving.


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Comments are closed.

  • Reem | Simply Reem
    Reem | Simply Reem
    September 10, 2012 at 9:10 AM

    I am loving the silver bowl n spoon.. Gorgeous!!!
    Yum.. kankana, heading to check out ur guest post gal!!

  • Deepa
    September 10, 2012 at 9:25 AM

    I am going to faint after looking these breath taking shrimp pulao photos !! Love the silver plate..

  • Rosa
    September 10, 2012 at 10:05 AM

    Gorgeous food and pictures! Basmati rice is so succulent.

    Heading to check your guest post



  • Soma
    September 10, 2012 at 10:23 AM

    silver thala bati! so beautiful and scrumptious.

  • PreeOccupied
    September 10, 2012 at 11:02 AM

    Stunning! Aajke aamio banabo, for dinner.

  • shema george
    shema george
    September 10, 2012 at 11:16 AM

    This looks absolutely divine !! I love the spoon and the bowl !! Shrimp is my fav…and i am literally drooling here

  • Arch
    September 10, 2012 at 11:37 AM

    Will go check out the recipe…I make a Goan style one with coconut milk – its a really super quick and super tasty pulav with prawns..

  • Vijitha
    September 10, 2012 at 11:43 AM

    I love shrimp biryani and more than anything I am loving the props. Where did you find that silver plate? Gorgeous gorgeous clicks sweets.

  • erin @ yummy supper
    erin @ yummy supper
    September 10, 2012 at 1:20 PM

    Kankana, Can I come over for dinner;)

  • Laura (Tutti Dolci)
    Laura (Tutti Dolci)
    September 10, 2012 at 2:48 PM

    Beautiful dish, I love shrimp and basmati rice!

  • Aunt Clara
    Aunt Clara
    September 10, 2012 at 3:22 PM

    Ohh, this pulls all the right strings. Lovely photos, and I have allt the ingredients for this in my kitchen. Guess what I’ll have for lunch tomorrow…

  • Krithi
    September 10, 2012 at 3:48 PM

    Lovely guest post Kankana!!

  • torviewtoronto and createwithmom
    torviewtoronto and createwithmom
    September 10, 2012 at 4:33 PM

    deliciously done lovely guest post

  • healthfulpursuit
    September 10, 2012 at 7:30 PM

    Thank you for writing on HP today, Kankana! The photos you shared are breathtaking, the recipe is simple, and your writing was superb (as always). It was so fabulous working with you. Have a great week!

  • indugetscooking
    September 10, 2012 at 9:25 PM

    The pilaf looks absolutely delightful. The shrimps – plump and juicy. Love it. And so true that such dishes taste best the next day.

  • Simone
    September 10, 2012 at 11:16 PM

    Such beautiful photos as always Kankana. Love it. I used to eat pilaf a lot when I first started living on my own as it was easy and something I could manage..;) never did I have a prawn version as I was not a prawn fan at that time. Well that has all changed but love this!

  • Meeta
    September 10, 2012 at 11:23 PM

    Divine! My dad makes the best chicken pulao ever and I am a huge fan of pulao/biryani & co. This one is on my list of things to make! Thanks!

  • anita
    September 10, 2012 at 11:26 PM

    What a beautiful post. Photos are classic!! Rice is definitely versatile and tastes completely different with different ingredients.

  • Sanjeeta kk
    Sanjeeta kk
    September 11, 2012 at 9:24 AM

    Love that dreamy first click…amazing!

  • dixya
    September 11, 2012 at 10:37 AM

    I totally agree with the whole idea of coming home to a cooked meal-and the shrimp pilaf looks amazing..

  • wok with ray
    wok with ray
    September 11, 2012 at 3:53 PM

    I love this long grain rice and those shrimp I almost want to pick them up from my computer screen. 🙂 If this is the type of meal I have coming home from long day of work, I’m in heaven. Thank you, Kankana and I how you are having a fun week! 🙂

  • Kitchen Belleicious
    Kitchen Belleicious
    September 11, 2012 at 6:55 PM

    oh i completely agree with you about eating a meal at home after a hard busy day. That is how i felt when i used to work too. Nothing makes me happier and more relaxed than cooking. isn’t that weird> LOL! This shrimp pulav looks amazing!

  • Angie@Angiesrecipes
    [email protected]
    September 11, 2012 at 9:06 PM

    A lovely rice dish! Love each click.

  • Asmita
    September 12, 2012 at 12:21 PM

    This looks so flavorful! Love the spices in the pulao. The silver plate is gorgeous!

  • mjskit
    September 12, 2012 at 3:13 PM

    What a beautiful and delicious looking dish! Shrimp and rice were made for each other! Beautiful pictures! You even made frozen cooked shrimp looked good! 🙂

  • Vishakha
    September 12, 2012 at 7:44 PM

    Love the props, the photos and styling! I really like the shot of the cooked prawns with ice. Great idea! 🙂

  • Nami | Just One Cookbook
    Nami | Just One Cookbook
    September 12, 2012 at 10:54 PM

    Just came back from Leanne’s blog. Very nice guest post! And I’m happy that I have everything to cook this (should I buy ghee for this or just substitute…still debating). Another great food styling and photography, Kankana! 🙂

  • wokandspoon
    September 13, 2012 at 1:46 PM

    Another great post! I’m very boring with the rice I cook – only ever do white rice. Must try this.

  • Debjani
    September 14, 2012 at 3:41 PM

    I gotta say, you can even make frozen shrimp look beautiful! True talent. I have never had shrimp pulao with potatoes. It looks so good.

  • reese@SeasonwithSpic
    [email protected]
    September 16, 2012 at 12:16 PM

    Mmm..Flavorful rice with shrimp! This is the kind of dish I would make often for dinner when I can access to fresh shrimp. I was going to share a similar dish as well, with a different take of course:) Looks like before I get a chance to do mine, I will just try out your recipe. Always welcome a new exciting way to prepare a dish. Speaking of which, I can almost taste the wonderful fragrance from the spices you used!

  • KiranTarun
    September 17, 2012 at 3:03 PM

    LOVE seafood pulav/biryani/paella — they are all GOOD!

  • Pia
    September 18, 2012 at 6:05 AM

    looks so delicious! beautiful long-grained rice, and prawns – what’s not to love! 🙂
    my ma always talks about a very decadent khichuri my grandaunt used to make when she was little. the khichuri would be cooked with golda chingri, in woks huge enough to feed an army, and everyone would talk about it for days 🙂

  • IshitaUnblogged
    October 8, 2012 at 12:41 AM

    Absolutely lovely! The detailing in each photograph – specially the ice and shrimps… ah I can smell the Pulao. I am always making Pulao – I guess it’s the easiest way to impress guests with the ‘exotic’ and fabulously tasting dish! I have a Shrimp Pulao for my blog – queue – have to trash the pics after seeing yours!!!