In a small skillet, dry roast all the whole spices through cloves over medium-low heat until they get fragrant and coriander seeds change color. (do not brown). Stir occasionally. This will take 1 to 3 minutes . Cool, transfer to a spice grinder and grind with the cinnamon and nutmeg. Keep aside or store in an airtight container. makes about 3 Tablespoons, half of which will be used for the pulao.
For the Pulao:
Soak the basmati rice in water for about 15 minutes (the next few steps take that much time, so no planning needed).
Heat oil in a pressure cooker over medium heat (IP on saute). Add cumin seeds and cook for a minute or until fragrant.
Add onions, a generous pinch of salt and a generous pinch of sugar and cook until golden. 5 to 7 minutes. Add ginger, garlic, turmeric, cayenne, pulao masala and mix well. Cook for few seconds or until very fragrant. Add tomatoes and a tbsp of water and cook until the tomatoes are saucy. Mash the larger pieces. about 5 minutes.
Add the vegetables, chickpeas and salt and mix well. Cook for a minute.
Drain the rice, add to the pressure cooker. Add scant 1.5 cups of water and mix well. Close the lid and cook for 1 to 3 minute on Manual in Instant Pot (or cook for 1 whistle) - Depends on the type/brand of rice.
Let the pressure release naturally. Add a dash of lemon juice and fluff. Taste and adjust salt if needed and mix. Garnish with cilantro and chopped mint. Serve with non dairy yogurt, raita, pickle or mango/mango salsa
To make in a saucepan instead: Follow steps 1 to 3 in a saucepan. At step 4, add the veggies and chickpeas, cover and cook for 6 minutes or until the vegetables are somewhat crisp al dente. At step 5, add 1.5 cups water and mix. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and cook for 18 minutes, or until the rice looks dry on the top. Let it sit for a few minutes, then open the lid and fluff.Nutritional values based on one serving