In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil. Add onion and cook until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes.
Stir in rice, cumin, and curry powder, and cook, stirring frequently, until rice is lightly browned, about 7 to 10 minutes.
Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add broth, bay leaf, and salt, and bring to boil.
Cover, reduce heat, and cook until rice is tender and all the liquid has been absorbed, about 15 to 17 minutes. Remove bay leaf and fluff with a fork. Stir in cranberries and pecans. Garnish with green onions.
White rice: Search out long-grain, jasmine, or basmati rice, but avoid short grain rice (bomba, risotto, sushi) which is too glutinous and sticky for this recipe. If you have your heart set on brown rice, the stuffing will need additional time to cook.
Curry powder: Not one spice, but actually a blend of a bunch of different spices (including but not limited to: coriander, cumin, turmeric, ginger, mustard, black pepper, cinnamon, cardamom, and chili pepper) Curry powder adds color and flavor to whatever it touches.
Rice cooker: Start the recipe as written on the stove, up to the point you add the broth. Then transfer the rice to a rice cooker, pour in the broth, bay leaf and salt, and cook according to the cooker's manual. When finished, fluff with a fork and stir in the nuts and fruit before adding the scallions.
Wild rice or wild rice blends: Pure wild rice uses considerably more liquid and needs more cooking time, too. Use 6 cups of broth for every one cup of wild rice, follow the recipe as directed, and be prepared to cook as long as one hour. If using a wild rice blend, follow the instructions and ratios on the package labels.
Mix up your mix-ins: This recipe can be used as a jumping-off point for many other combinations of flavors. Try dried cherries and walnuts, chives, lemon zest, or another type of ground spice in the rice.