Sufficient for 4-6 people
(Recipe Prepared By:
- 500g (l lb) Basmati long grain rice
- 7 tablespoons salt
- 100ml (3 fl oz) vegetable oil
- 4 teaspoons liquid saffron
- 60 g (2 oz) clarified unsalted butter
all your Persian
1. Pick over the rice, wash thoroughly in
5 or 6 changes of water, and leave to soak in salted water to cover by
at least 21/2 cm (1 in) for 3 hours.
2. Bring about 2 litres (4 pints) of water
with 3 tablespoons salt to a rapid boil in a 3 litre (6 pint) saucepan.
3. Pour off excess water from rice and pour
into fast bubbling water. Bring back to the boil and boil for 2-3 minutes.
After 2 minutes, test to see if rice is ready: the grains should be soft
on the outside but still firm in the center. Strain and rinse with tepid
water. Toss rice gently in colander.
4. Return the rinsed out saucepan to the
heat and add oil and 2-3 tablespoons water. Heat till sizzling.
5. Sprinkle one layer of rice across the
bottom. Then spread the rest of rice and building it up into a conical
6. Poke two or three holes through the rice
to the bottom with the handle of a wooden spoon. Wrap the saucepan lid
in a clean teacloth and cover pan firmly.
7. Keep on high heat for 2-3 more minutes
until rice is steaming, then reduce heat to low, for at least 30 minutes.
The rice can be kept warm and fresh on the very lowest heat for a further
hour or even longer.
8. Place saucepan on a cold wet surface
and leave for a minute or two. while waiting, melt the butter and put aside
for garnish. Lightly mix 2 or 3 tablespoons of rice with the liquid saffron
in a small bowl, reserve for garnish.
9. To dish up, gently toss the rice and
sprinkle lightly on to a warmed dish in a symmetrical mound. Garnish with
the saffron rice, and pour the melted butter all over to give it a sheen.
10. Finally, remove the crusty bottom and
serve on a separate plate.