My friend Kiyo at My Lilikoi Kitchen is such a fabulous cook. She makes the most amazing polo with a crunchy exterior Tah Dig (Persian rice). I love to use her recipe. I published a polo with Tah Dig recipe long ago, and Kiyo perfected it. She made the rice sing; it is crispy on the outside and exquisitely moist inside. The rice is perfectly cooked and specked with beautiful orange saffron and bright, yellow turmeric.
Recently, I adapted her recipe to incorporate perfectly cooked lentils, with just the right amount of bite – and the addition of soft, succulent dried, sliced apricots. Once, at a gathering, a colleague of my husband’s, Mahshid, incorporated cooked, green lentils and apricots into her mixed polo with Tah Dig. I decided to do the same. The combination of the glacé, honeyed apricot and earthy lentils are the perfect juxtaposition to the Persian spices in the savory, mouthwatering polo.
Mixed Polo Tah Dig (Persian Rice) with Apricots and Lentils
Adapted from Kiyo’s Recipe at My Lilikoi Kitchen
1 1/2 cups white basmati rice
1 3/4 plus 1 Tbsp. free range chicken stock
1 tablespoon butter, melted (or, substitute lactose-free butter or margarine)
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
a small pinch of turmeric
several pinches of saffron, crumbled
1/4 – 1/2 cup dry lentils, cooked and drained. Avoid overcooking the lentils.
1/4 – 1/2 cup dried apricots, halved and sliced very thinly
- Soak rice in a bowl of water for 1 hour, or as many hours as time will allow – even all day.
- Rinse the rice well, until the water run clear.
- Drain. well.
- Place the rice, chicken stock, butter or margarine, salt, turmeric and saffron in a Persian, non-stick rice cooker.
- Stir all ingredients well.
- Place the cover on the rice cooker.
- Cover the rice cooker with a thick, kitchen towel.
- Cook the rice for 45 minutes.
- Uncover, stir in the apricots and lentils. Take care not to break the crunchy, bottom surface of the rice. Only stir on top of the bottom surface.
- Press down on the rice with a spatula or frying turner.
- Cover the rice again with the cover and towel.
- Cook a few more minutes, just long enough to warm the dish through.
- Invert the rice onto a plate and serve with your favorite Persian khoresh or kebob.
©Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward, shannaward.com (2013), unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without expressed and written permission from this blog’s author, Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward, and/or owner is strictly and completely prohibited.
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