Coconut Brown Rice with Peas, Arugula, Mint, Basil, and Cashews


for the rice: 1 1/2 cups brown jasmine or basmati rice 1 14-ounce can coconut milk 2 cups water 1/2 teaspoon salt 2 tablespoons white sugar 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1. Rub the oil over the bottom of a regular-sized pot (you will also need a tight-fitting lid). Add the rest of the ingredients. 2. Stir and set over high heat, bring it to a boil. Immediately reduce heat to low and cover with a lid. Simmer for 60 minutes, or until the liquid has been absorbed by the rice. 3. When all (or nearly all) of the coconut-water is gone, turn off the heat, but leave the pot on the burner (covered). Allow the rice to sit for another 5-10 minutes, or until you're ready to eat. Your coconut rice will stay warm this way for at least an hour (a great make-ahead tip if you're expecting company!)

for the finished dish: 1 recipe brown coconut rice 2/3 cup toasted cashews 1 cup peas (fresh or frozen) 2 tablespoons mint, finely chopped 2 tablespoons basil, finely chopped 1/4 cup coconut flakes, packed 1 handful arugula salt and pepper to taste

(serves four)

1. In a small pot of salted, boiling water, blanch the peas by cooking them for 2 minutes (until bright green) and then dunking in ice water. 2. Combine all of the ingredients together, and season to taste.

Photograph: Claire Thomas