Monday, March 29, 2010

Red Saffron Makes Red Rice

This is my my daughter's favorite rice dish. She likes the brilliant red color of the rice as well as the nutty, fragrant saffron flavor. It is a common side dish for many of our holiday feasts. In our family we look for any excuse to have a feast and this dish is an easy way to brighten it up.

To get this color you must have the right type of saffron. I got mine when I was visiting Luxor, Egypt as part of a Nile cruise.  Only the dark red saffron will give this color, however regular saffron gives a yellowish orange color which is also quite appetizing. You can probably get it in a Middle Eastern market or a gourmet shop.  
This side dish is served with many of the recipes on this site, partially for its looks, but also because we love the taste. It goes great with Middle Eastern dishes, but can be served with just about anything. Here are some dishes with which we serve this rice.
  • Two Cups Jasmine Rice
  • 1 Teaspoon Red Saffron 
  • 2 tsp Chopped Garlic
  • 1 pat butter
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 Cups beef, chicken, turkey or lamb stock. Choose the stock to match the meal. Use water if you are vegetarian, it works fine.

  1. Heat the pan to medium-high heat and add the butter and oil. 
  2. Heat until the butter melts and just begins to sizzle.
  3. Add the rice and fry in the butter/oil mixture.
  4. Add the saffron, salt and garlic. Mix in thoroughly.
  5. Add the stock or water, stir.
  6. Since the rice is hot, the stock will probably come to a boil almost immediately. Otherwise bring it to a boil.
  7. Turn down the heat to low (about 2.8) and cover.
  8. Cook until all the liquid is absorbed and the rice no longer makes a simmering sound. About 15 minutes.
  9. Turn of the heat and let the rice stand covered for about 10 minutes to absorb the steam.
  10. Stir the rice so that the red color is uniformly distributed.

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