Saffron, Date and Almond Rice

Goodness, what a beautiful rice dish. Ottolenghi again creates magic with this Iranian recipe that he credits Claudia Roden’s classic A Book Of Middle Eastern Food. He believes that Irani people cook the best rice, and I have to say he might be right.

This recipe takes a bit more effort than banging some rice into the rice cooker, but for special occasions, and for weekends, it is definitely worth it. The rice grains are beautifully separated and soft. The dish has a sweet overtone from the dates, and conjures up beautiful Middle Eastern feasts on low tables in tents with thick rugs covering your legs.

This dish is cooked like a biryani, in layers. It needs a very low heat – raise the pot above your heat source a little if you can (eg place a roasting rack or heat diffuser over the heat source). It could also be cooked in a very low oven, but you’ll miss the crunchy rice that forms at the bottom.

Recently I needed to replace my saffron, so I ordered some from Saffron Only. It is the most beautiful saffron! Far better that what I had been using. If you love saffron, check her out on Instagram. (I only recommend products when they are excellent, and am not recompensed for my recommendations.)

Similar dishes include Saffron Rice, Kosheri, Green Mango and Coconut Rice, and Rice with Orzo.

Also try Saffron and Rose Scented Aubergine, Golden Saffron Spiced Tea, and Dates and Saffron Soaked in Spiced Ghee.

Browse all of our Rice dishes and all of our Ottolenghi recipes. Or take some time and explore our Mid Spring collection of dishes.

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Dates and Saffron Soaked in Spiced Ghee | An Ancient Rasayana

For millennia, dates have been considered an energy giving tonic by many cultures. Taken to the next level by Ayurveda (the Indian traditional medical system), dates are combined with other healing and energy giving substances – ghee, saffron, cardamom, cinnamon and ginger. Rich and sweet, Dates and Saffron Soaked in Spiced Ghee is said to nourish and revitalize your deepest tissues. This mixture is a classic rasayana, a tonic for rejuvenation. It is also an ancient love potion! Whether you want to love another person, or your life, or just find more happiness in your day, this is definitely or you.

Healing and love making, what more is need from a tonic that is more like a snack than medicine? It is said to strengthen immunity as well as aid digestion.tes and Alm

You might like to also try our Saffron Rasayana for the Weary and Dates Milk to fight Fatigue.  Try some other Ayurvedic dishes: Cardamom, Coriander and Fennel Tea, Ginger and Tulsi Tea, and Diet and Consciousness.

Also try Saffron, Dates and Almond Rice, and Saffron and Rose Scented Aubergine.

Have a look at other Date recipes, and our Ayurveda recipes. Or browse our Indian recipes. You might like to check our Late Spring recipes here.

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Saffron and Rosewater Scented Aubergine | Persian Style Eggplant

This beautiful recipe of eggplants stewed in a jammy tomato sauce flavoured with saffron and rosewater is testament to the versatility of this exquisite vegetable.

Aubergines! No one cooks them better than Italians, Indians and Middle Eastern cuisines. This beautiful recipe of eggplants stewed in a jammy tomato sauce flavoured with saffron and rosewater is testament to the versatility of this exquisite vegetable.

This recipe has a wonderful mix of spices including saffron and the sprinkling of rosewater gives it a wonderful Middle Eastern ambiance. The house smells amazing as the aubergines cooks gently in this scented tomato base.

Are you looking for more Eggplant dishes? Read more about Eggplants, and try Babaganoush, Eggplant and Zucchini with a Chickpea and Harissa Sauce, and Marinated Eggplant.

Or Middle Eastern dishes? You might also like Turkish Red Lentil Soup, Beetroot with Yoghurt Tahini Dressing and Za’atar, and Eggplants with Sultanas and Pinenuts.

Also try Saffron, Dates and Almond Rice, Golden Saffron Spiced Tea, and Dates and Saffron Soaked in Spiced Ghee.

Browse all of our dozens of Eggplant dishes, our Middle Eastern dishes and Persian dishes. Or simply explore our Mid Autumn dishes.

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Saffron, a Special Spice

Saffron is indigenous to India and Iran. It is formed from the whole, orange-red dried saffron threads, the stigma of the autumn crocus, crocus sativus. Look for a reliable supplier of saffron, as it is very expensive, and there can be a great deal of adulteration. Luckily it is so potent that it is used in only small amounts, especially to enhance the taste of desserts and rice dishes.

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Golden Saffron Spice Tea and Kashmiri Kahwa Tea

I first came across this beautiful tea in a small shop in a village in South India.

There are certain “C” words that I love when in the kitchen. It is especially true when it comes to spices. My favourite and indispensable spices all being with C — Cloves, Cardamom, Cinnamon, Coriander seed, Cumin.

If you have these in your pantry, you have some of the Indian cooking Essentials. For example, Garam Masala uses them as a strong, warming basis.

But did you know that you can also make a very special infused tea from these same spices?

You might also like to try Phanta (Basil) Tea, Ayurvedic Teas, or Herbal Teas. Try Saffron Rice with Dates and Almonds also.

Or browse all of our Teas. Our Indian dishes are here and our Indian Essentials here. Or explore our Late Spring Recipes.

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