Basmati rice has been our favorite for several years, but this Persian rice recipe or Arabic-style rice was a real hit. I don't recommend using another rice type. Use basmati, preferably bought from Arab stores, and you'll notice a big difference ... Besides that it's very aromatic and tasty, it looks very good on any table, festive or not. To make it clear, this recipe is not a dessert rice, but you can make it, if you want. It contains cranberries or sweet raisins, but they are more like a contrasting taste and all combine perfectly there.
As traditionalist as I am in food matters, it is only by tasting that I can be convinced of new flavors and tastes. Trust me, as you've done so far, that any food I recommend is highly tested and verified by the most demanding taster - myself.
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Here you can see the raisins, cranberries and walnuts that I used, exactly as I indicated in the recipe.
You can omit something and replace it with anything else you like. However, I'd say raisins and cashews are mandatory.
Do not use much saffron, just what you can take with your fingertips.
It will give the rice finer color and flavor. If you don't have saffron, you can replace it with half a teaspoon of turmeric/curcuma.
Pour boiling hot water over the saffron, stir and set aside while we are dealing with the rice.
Wash the basmati rice with plenty of water, 3-4 times, until the water is as clear as possible.
Fill a saucepan with 3-4 liters of water. Add one teaspoon of salt and bring to boil.
When it comes to the boil, add the rice and mix well.
Let simmer for 6-7 minutes over low heat. The rice should be a bit raw, not completely cooked.
Immediately remove from the heat. Pour into a sieve and completely drain the hot water.
Now quickly take a deep frying pan and melt the butter in it.
Add the raisins and the nuts.
Cook for 5 minutes, stirring periodically, until you notice the cashews begin to brown.
Pour over the boiled and drained rice.
Add a little salt and the water with saffron/turmeric.
Turn off the heat, cover the pan with a lid and allow the rice to infuse for 30-40 minutes.
Now we have the perfect rice - with visible grains, colorful, flavorful and delicious.
If you want to make it a dessert, add a little honey or sugar and flavors, to taste.
This Arabic rice is the perfect garnish for any food, but especially for meat, or chicken cooked in Turkish style.
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