Description: this is by far the super easiest persian rice recipe (and yet, comidically, not the one my mother chose to start teaching me with...) and whenever i feel homesick i make it cuz the smell is just so comforting.
it's typically served with fish but i feel like it pretty much goes with anything (at new year fish and sabzi polo is the traditional meal tho)
Time: 30 minutes - 2 hours (depends...)
Difficulty: Easy

  1. basmati rice
  2. 'greens' (parsely, dill, coriander, fenugreek, green onion stems)
  3. oil
  4. saffron (optional)
  5. salt
  1. clean and soak rice in salted water (you can get away with not soaking if you just boil it a few minutes longer...)
  2. chop all your greens and mix them together. notice i haven't put any measurements, my mother gives measurements in very useful ways such as "until it smells right" or "you'll know when it's enough"... whatever amount of rice you're making you need double that weight in herbs, then i just use equal parts of each herb (and adjust as the mood strikes me, like if i feel dill-ier one day then i use more dill...)
  1. boil your rice rapidly in salted water until it's about halfway cooked (shouldn't take very long), then rinse in cold water and drain.
  2. put a few spoonfuls of oil in a non-stick pan that has a good fitting lid. mix the rice and greens in whatever way is easiest for you (if you made a lot of rice then it's easier to do in sections...) and put into the pot, then take a few sprigs of saffron and crush between your fingers and sprinkle over (saffron used to be worth its weight in gold before gold shot up in price just recently, use sparingly and have dry hands...). if the rice isn't flat at the top that's usually better, shape it into kind of a dome then take the end of a wooden spoon and poke three holes through the rice to the bottom of the pot (for the steam to come through).
  3. pour just a tiny bit of water (two tablespoons maybe? the rice will still have some water from rinsing) and what might seem like a ridiculous amount of oil overtop of the rice (depends how dry you like the rice, but double what you put in the bottom).
  4. put some paper towel between the lid and the pot to make a really tight seal (and this will soak up the steam too). try not to open the pot from here on, cook for five minutes at 2/3 heat to get the steam going then lower the heat to about 1/3 and continue cooking for twenty or so minutes.
  5. at this point the rice will be all cooked and delicious, but you have the option of reducing the heat a little more (1/4 ish...) and letting it cook really slow for as long as you can wait in order to get this really tasty crunchy rice crust at the bottom of your pot. if you do this right you can even flip the rice over onto a serving dish and have what kind of looks like a rice pie.