Try This Delicious Jeweled Rice for Your Next Fall or Holiday Gathering. World Cuisine Today Magazin
Growing up, I prepared many meals for my younger sisters and family. To liven things up, I became intrigued with all the ways in which people cook for special occasions in different countries. I've always been interested in the cooking of the former Persian empire which was a crossroads from the nations of the far east and the far west of the Orient. A Persian friend once explained to me, that kings used to balance their meals between spicy and savory main courses, and cooling foods like yogurt with mint, Labneh with herbs and other less spicy items. It was referred to as blending hot and cold foods. The idea was, if the king ate in a balanced manor, hopefully he would rule the empire in a balanced manor as well! So, when planning your next family feast, try some Jeweled Persian Rice and feel a little more royal with your guests. This dish goes well with a Honey or Pomegranate Glazed Chicken or with a Lamb Stew or pan roasted Saffron and citrus chicken. Mint tea is a great accompaniment.
Jeweled Persian Rice
Two cups Basmati style or long grain rice
3 cups vegetable broth or water
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup orange juice
One large yellow or white onion minced
Two large cloves of garlic minced
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, canola oil or clarified butter
One Tablespoon sweet paparika
One teaspoon Kosher salt or sea salt
One teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon Allspice
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves minced or chives minced
One tablespoon fresh dill
One tablespoon fresh thyme
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup shelled Pistachios
1/2 cup slivered blanched almonds or 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Three Tablespoons honey
Three Tablespoons water
1) In a wide pan or dutch oven with sides place 1/8 of a cup of your oil. Add the onion and sizzle until the onion is translucent but a tiny bit firm on a low to medium heat. Next add the minced garlic for thirty seconds to one minute. Next add the rice and the other 1/8 cup of the oil and sprinkle the entire mixture with: Paprika, Salt, Cardamom, Cinnamon, and Allspice.
2) Meanwhile, in a small bowl of hot water place your dried fruits and let them plump up for about ten to fifteen minutes while you sautee your rice. Chop up your nuts finely if desired. Fold the fruit and nut mixture into your rice mixture and add the mince herbs saving some extra of the fruit, nuts and herbs for garnish.
3) In a large soup pot or dutch oven heat your broth, lemon juice and orange juice to a boil. Add the rice, fruit, nut herb mixture to this reduce to very low and place the lid on cooking for fifteen to twent minutes.
Place in a beautiful bowl with a lid to keep warm in the oven until serving time. If desired place on a beautiful platter with your chicken around the perimeter and the chicken sauce separate for drizzling as guests desire. Try a Pomegranate, Apricot, or Saffron and Citrus Flavored Chicken with this Dish.
Recipe Developed by: World Cuisine Today Magazine September 5, 2018
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