Rice Recipe That Tastes Awesome

Rice and Baby Broad Beans with Dill

I eat a lot of rice! It’s nice to have it with some type of sauce but sometimes it can be eaten as a meal in itself with some other ingredients mixed in. This recipe can be eaten alone or it can be eaten with a sauce, it's up to you. It is actually a Persian/Iranian rice dish that I learnt from my sister-in-law. The recipe is good for about three of four people depending on how much everyone eats.

The Asian brands of rice are normally the best so I usually use Aahu Barah super sela basmati and if I can’t get that then any other yellow, quick cook rice is fine. I have put up a couple of pictures to help you distinguish yellow (sometimes called golden) from ordinary white rice, although any rice of your choice should work fine.

Which Rice?

Yellow Rice is Better
Yellow Rice is Better

You Will Need:

  • Rice (Long Grain/Basmati/Quick Cook) – Your own choice of rice.

  • Vegetable oil

  • Boiling water

  • Salt

  • Dried Dill (roughly 4 table spoons)

  • Frozen Baby Broad Beans (Peeled)

White Rice for Comparison
White Rice for Comparison
Aahu Barah Rice. My favourite.
Aahu Barah Rice. My favourite.

Prepare the Rice

The rice I use typically swells up generously and so as a rule I take one and a half cup of rice for each person I’m feeding. For this recipe, you would take 6 cups of rice. Place it in a large bowl and wash over the rice a number of times until the water is much clearer. Fill over with medium-hot water and allow to stand for at least 20 minutes.

Take a large cooking pot (enough to fit at least double the amount of rice you have) and fill it to three quarters with boiled water. Add two tablespoons of salt (I know this seems like a lot but most of it is drained away) put a lid on the pot and leave it to reach boiling point. (If your cooker has a good flame, do this part a bit later).

Baby Broad Beans
Baby Broad Beans

Prepare the Broad Beans

The fun part. Take roughly two cups of baby broad beans (frozen is best) and soak them in warm water until softened. Grab a plastic bag that you can use for rubbish. Peel the light coloured outer skin of the broad beans leaving the bright green bean in your bowl and throw away the skin.

Broad bean skin is actually a migraine trigger so if you suffer from migraines, it is vital that you peel every one of them. Once they are all peeled, give them a quick wash under the tap and then pour them into your boiling water. Drain your rice and add to the boiling water.

Add one tablespoon of your dried dill to the water and boil the rice on full flame for roughly seven minutes. At about five minutes, take a small frying pan and heat around three quarters of a cup full of vegetable oil.

Your Rice is Almost Done

When your rice is done boiling, it should have a specific texture that is not too soft but with a little bit of bite to it. To test, take a grain from the water and squeeze it between your thumb and index finger, if it is done it will flatten but not split apart, if it splits up into segments then it needs a bit longer.

Once the rice and beans are done, pour them into a large drainer and allow to rest while you prepare your rice pot for the next stage. Using the same pot, line the base with a thin layer of cold oil, pour your drained rice and beans back into the pot, make it into a neat central mound and then using the end of a spoon dig a few spaces within the mound to allow steam to escape.

Using a slotted spoon or spatula, pour the hot oil over the top of the rice using the spatula to disperse the oil. Fry up roughly five tablespoons of water in the same frying pan and pour into the rice. Add some more dried dill and cover the lid of your pot with a tea-towel and wedge on to the top of your pot to ensure that no steam can escape. Heat on full flame for roughly two minutes, and then move the pot to your lowest flame for around five minutes.

Once done, be careful when removing the lid of the pot as the steam will come billowing out. Add the rest (or as much as you like) of the dried dill to the rice. And enjoy!

*Note* Cooking times for rice will vary slightly depending on type and brand. It's best to use one that you are familiar with.

Iranian/Persian Cooking Methods

This recipe uses the traditional cooking pot method but modern Iranians may use a rice cooker to save time. They work really well for Iranian foods and you even get that yummy, crispy base. I don't always use a rice cooker but if I'm just cooking for one or two people then the one I use is similar to the Black and Decker one below. 

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