Friday, April 26, 2013

Persian Jeweled Rice

I pinned this rice dish from the view from the great island a long time ago.  I kept looking at the recipe saying that one day I would make it, but I never seemed to have all the ingredients for it or I would change my mind and just make plain jasmine rice instead.  It looked so pretty though that I eventually just had to try it.  We both really loved this, although we increased the amount of spices because we tend to like really strong flavours.

1 1/2 cups rice
1 onion, diced
1/2 tsp saffron threads
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp cardamom
2 tbsp butter
2 bay leaves
zest of 1 lemon
1/4 cup dried cherries
1/4 cup dried apricots, diced
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup pistachios
seeds from 1 pomegranate

Place the saffron in 2 1/2 cups of hot water.  Set aside.

Melt the butter in a large pan, add the fennel seeds and cumin seeds and fry for a minute or two.  Add the onion and cook for about 5 minutes.  Stir in the rice and fry for a few minutes.  Add in the cinnamon, allspice and cardamom, bay leaves, lemon zest and the saffron water.  Season with salt and pepper, add in the dried fruit and bring to a boil, cover and reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes or until the rice is tender.

To serve, remove the bay leaves and top with the almonds, pistachios and pomegranate.

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