Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Saffron Rice

Cooking rice is one of those things that once you get it right, you can't ever mess it up again. You just need to get your technique perfected and you're good to go.
Personally I put 1 tsp (flat) of salt of every 1 cup of rice and I make sure the water level is the width of one finger above the rice- any more and the rice will end up soggy.
I will post a more basic version of rice sometime soon, but as for today: I present to you, Saffron Rice. Otherwise known as a party in the mouth.
Seriously, this dish is so full of flavor, it practically dances in your mouth!


2 cups rice, preferably Basmati, washed and drained from excess water
2 tbsp ghee + 1 tbsp extra
2 tsp salt
10 black peppercorns
4 cardamon pods
4 cloves
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 tsp saffron threads
zest of 1 orange

2 tbsp golden raisins
2 tbsp blanched almonds, halved or slivered
2 tbsp pistachios


Boil 1 liter of water and keep at hand.
Place the saffron threads in a small bowl and pour 2 tbsp of boiling water, leave to seep.

Heat 2 tbsp of the ghee in a deep medium sized pot. When ghee is very hot throw in the peppercorns, cardamon, cloves and the cinnamon stick. Fry for 2-3 minutes.
Add in the rice and stir frequently for another 2-3 minutes, the rice should be a little colored at the bottom.
 Pour the boiled water over the rice and spices, stir in the salt. Add in the orange zest and the saffron threads with the soaking water.
 Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a low simmer. Leave covered for 20 minutes.
Then, uncover and pick out the cardamon pods, cloves and cinnamon which have floated to the surface. Return cover.

Meanwhile, heat the remaining ghee in a shallow pan, fry the raisins until they puff up into round balls. Remove and empty onto a plate lined with kitchen tissue paper to absorb the excess oil.
Next fry the almonds and pistachios, place along side the raisins.
Uncover the rice and stir in the raisins, almonds and pistachios. Cover and let stand a further 5 minutes.

Serve hot accompanied with roast chicken, or braised leg of lamb or Fesenjun


Thank you for visiting! Please send me a comment if you have any questions, requests or suggestions