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Morasa Polo

By Michelle Routhenstein, MS, RD, CDE, CDN


Ingredients:

1⁄4 teaspoon ground saffron (or grind 1⁄2 teaspoon saffron threads in a spice grinder or with a mortar and pestle)


3 cups basmati rice


1 tablespoon table salt


3 1⁄2 tablespoons avocado oil, divided


1⁄4 teaspoon ground turmeric


1⁄2 teaspoon ground cumin


3⁄4 cup barberries (or dried cranberries)


1⁄2 cup raisins


1 cup shredded carrots


1 tablespoon rose water


1⁄4 cup lighty salted shelled Wonderful Pistachios


Directions:

1. Prepare the saffron by combining it with 1⁄4 cup freshly boiled water in a small glass bowl Cover it with plastic wrap and set aside.

2. Wash the rice in a medium bowl by adding cool water, enough to cover, and moving it around with your hand, then draining the water using a fine mesh sieve, and repeating this process 3 to 4 times.

3. In the same medium bowl, place the drained rice and fill it with water, 2 inches above the rice. Add 1 tablespoon of salt and let it soak for 1 hour.

4. Bring a medium pot of water to boil on high heat.

5. Add the rice to the pot of boiling water, and cook rice until al dente (until the rice is soft on the outside but has a hard bite in the center). This takes about 6-7 minutes.

6. Once rice is parboiled, drain it in a fine mesh strainer and immediately rinse it with cold water and rinse the excess salt off. Set aside.

7. In a medium pot on low to medium heat, add 2 tablespoons of avocado oil and 1⁄4 teaspoon turmeric. Tilt the pan so that the turmeric is melted and coats the bottom. Then add 1⁄2 teaspoon cumin and 1⁄4 cup water. Give the pan a quick shake and then add rice to it in a heaping cone-like shape.

8. Once you see steam rising from the pan, line the lid with a clean paper towel, cover, and reduce the temperature to low. Let the rice steam for about 1 hour over low heat.

9. Wash the barberries and raisins. Add them to a small pot over low heat with 1⁄2 tablespoon of avocado oil. Let them fry for about 2 minutes until they soften, then set aside in a small bowl.

10. Add the shredded carrots with 1⁄4 cup water to the small pot and let it cook for about 5 minutes until water has cooked out, then add 1⁄2 teaspoon avocado oil and cook for about 3 to 5 more minutes until lightly browned. Add the carrots to the small bowl with the barberries and raisins.

11. Once barberries have cooled, add 1 tablespoon rose water. Then add carrots and pistachios into the small bowl with the previous ingredients, and combine.

12. Once rice has cooked for about an hour, remove 1 cup of the rice and place it in another small bowl to combine with the saffron. Toss to coat.

13. Decorate the rice with the saffron rice, and the barberries/raisin/pistachio mixture and enjoy!



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