TAHTA KHOD­HAR

(VEG­ETA­BLES WITH RICE)

Good (UAE) - - GOOD FOOD -

SERVES 4-6

4 cups bas­mati rice

10 saf­fron threads

2 loumi (dried black limes)

4 tbs but­ter

250g but­ton mush­rooms, quar­tered 2 tbs oil

1 large onion, peeled and diced

1 tsp turmeric pow­der

1 tsp bzar (see page 60)

2 large toma­toes, diced

2 large zuc­chi­nis, diced

250g green beans, cut into 4cm lengths ½ cup co­rian­der, chopped

½ cup pars­ley, chopped

½ tsp ground cin­na­mon

½ tsp ground pep­per

1) Rinse rice and drain. Place rice in bowl and cover with water, then leave to soak. 2) Use a mor­tar and pes­tle to grind saf­fron threads. Add 3 ta­ble­spoons hot water, then set aside. 3) Use a mor­tar and pes­tle to crack loumi. Re­move hard peel and seeds. Set fruit aside. In a large skil­let, melt 2 tbs but­ter over medium heat, add mush­rooms and cook, stir­ring, for 5 min­utes un­til ten­der. Re­move and set aside. Heat oil and re­main­ing 2 tbs but­ter in the pan over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stir­ring, for 4-5 min­utes un­til translu­cent. Add turmeric and stir for 30 sec­onds. Add bzar and keep stir­ring. do not add more oil! Add cleaned loumi, toma­toes, zuc­chini and beans, then cover and cook over medium-low heat, stir­ring oc­ca­sion­ally, for 15 min­utes. If it starts to dry out, add a ta­ble­spoon of water at a time. Re­move lid and sim­mer for a fur­ther 15 min­utes un­til most of the liq­uid has evap­o­rated. 4) Add sautéed mush­rooms, stir and sim­mer for an­other 5 min­utes. Sea­son with salt and pep­per. 5) Add co­rian­der, pars­ley and cin­na­mon, then stir gen­tly. Turn heat off, cover and set aside. 6) Mean­while, boil 4 litres water. Add drained rice and 2 tea­spoons salt to boil­ing water. Cook rice over medium heat for 5-6 min­utes un­til half-cooked. Re­move rice from heat, drain in a colan­der and place on top of the veg­etable mix­ture. Cover and cook over low heat for 20 min­utes, or un­til the rice is fluffy and ready to eat. 7) Trans­fer the tahta khod­har to a large serv­ing plat­ter and driz­zle the saf­fron liq­uid over the rice for visual ef­fect and flavour. Serve while hot!

Na­jat Sayed Al Hashemi shared her recipe for tahta khod­har

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