*Wrapping the lid with a tea towel keeps the steam in the pot, encourages the rice grains to stay separate, and absorbs condensation that would otherwise collect on the lid and drip back into the pan.

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced small
  • 2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 450g (2 cups) basmati rice
  • 950ml (4 cups) water
  • 70g (½ cup) dried apricots, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 75g (¾ cup) unsalted pistachios, toasted and chopped

In a large saute pan that has a lid, over medium heat, heat the olive oil, once the oil is shimmering add the onion and cook, stirring often, until the onions are very soft and translucent, but not browning. Add the garam masala and stir into the onions until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the salt and pepper

Stir in the rice and cook, stirring, until the rice turns translucent, about 4 minutes. Stir in the water along with the apricots. Bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low, cook for 10 minutes, until the rice is cooked through. wrap a clean tea towel around the pot lid, and cover the pot set aside for 5 minutes undisturbed, then remove lid and fluff with a fork. Mound the pilaf on a serving platter or in a shallow bowl, and top with the nuts.