Decorating basmati rice with pistachios, barberries and saffron

This rice is truly delicious and beautiful and really shows off the grains of your rice complemented by the vivid colors of barberries, pistachios and saffron. It makes a great aromatic side dish with touch of everyday superfood ingredients.

Saffron rice with barberries and chopped pistachios

What you need

  • 300g or aromatic basmati rice
  • saffron, grinded
  • 150g dried barberries
  • 50g slivered pistachios
  • 2tbsp olive oil or 60g unsalted butter
  • Salt

How to make basmatic rice

Rinse your rice under by using a deep bowl to make sure the rice does not fall out. Ideally set your rice in a cold water to soak for about 1 hour. Add the saffron to a small heatproof glass or bowl and cover with 2-3 tablespoons of hot water, then set aside to soak.

Drain your rice and add to a large saucepan with some salt. Pour over boiling water so it comes a generous 3 centimetres above the rice and set over a medium high heat. Boil for about 3-4 minutes until the rice grains are just cooked enough to be broken but still hard in the middle, then drain and rinse under cold running water to cool and drain well. The rice will have started to cook but will still have plenty of bite and the grains will not yet be fluffy.

Put the rice back in the saucepan over a medium heat and drizzle some olive oil or mix with half of the butter. Using the handle of a wooden spoon make 5-6 holes through the rice all the way to the bottom of the pan, this helps it to steam evenly. Also, make sure you handle the rice gently and without breaking the grains. Cover the pan and cook for about 30 minutes.

In a separate sauce pan, add olive oil or the remaining of your butter, stir fry the barberries with half of your chopped pistachios on a low heat for a few minutes. In this step you can also add a spoon of your mix of saffron and water to give more color and aroma to the barberries. Keep this in the sauce pan so you can quickly reheat if needed just before serving.

How to make saffron rice and serve with barberries and pistachios

Separate a few spoons of your cooked basmati rice and mix with your saffron water directly in the bowl the soaked saffron is.

Serve the remaining white basmati rice on your serving plate. Then first add your saffron rice on top of the white rice, and then finish of by adding the mixture of barberries followed by the remaining slivered pistachios.

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