Saffron Rice

Saffron rice will fancify any curry if you want to dress it up a little. I often serve it at dinner parties to add a little difference from plain boiled rice. The saffron not only adds its vibrant yellow colour but also a distinctive taste too, hard to describe – but very pleasant. I sometimes add some dried sultanas at the rice stage if the curry I’m serving is particularly peppery or spicy. This adds a little sweetness to counteract the savoury.

1 cup basmati rice
1 tablespoon ghee
2 bay leaves
4 cloves
6 cardamon pods
large pinch of saffron threads
1 1/2 cups light chicken stock

Rinse the rice till the water runs clear then drain for 15 minutes. Soak the saffron in 2 tablespoons hot water for 15 minutes.

Heat the ghee in a medium saucepan over a moderate heat until hot then add the bay leaves, cloves and cardamon pods. Cook for about 30 seconds then add the rice. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly until all the water has evaporated. Pour in the saffron and the stock and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low and simmer gently for 12-15 minutes until all the water has evaporated. Cover the pan with a clean tea towel, return the lid and leave undisturbed for 10 minutes. Remove the lid and towel and gently fluff up with a fork just before serving.

Serve with one of my delicious curries.

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