Four dishes by Anissa Helou

The Guardian - Feast - - Feast - From Qatar to Iran

Soak Prep Cook Serves Overnight 1 hr 1 hr 10 min 4

200g dried can­nellini beans, soaked overnight in wa­ter with ½ tsp bi­car­bon­ate of soda 100g un­salted but­ter 4 gar­lic cloves, peeled and crushed to a fine paste

½ tsp ground turmeric 200g fresh dill, fronds only, chopped

1 good pinch saf­fron Salt and finely ground black pep­per

4 eggs

Drain and rinse the beans. Peel them one by one by nick­ing one cor­ner to break the skin be­fore peel­ing or squeez­ing it off.

Melt the but­ter in a large, deep fry­ing pan over a medium heat. Add the gar­lic and, when it starts siz­zling and is fra­grant, stir in the turmeric.

Add the beans and three-quar­ters of the dill and saute for a minute or two. Add 500ml wa­ter and the saf­fron, and bring to a boil, then re­duce the heat to low, cover and sim­mer for 45 min­utes.

Add the re­main­ing dill and con­tinue sim­mer­ing for about 15 min­utes, un­til the beans are ten­der. Un­cover the pan and re­duce the sauce if it is still too thin. Sea­son to taste.

Make four shal­low de­pres­sions in the beans, break an egg into each one and sea­son. Cook un­til the eggs are done to your lik­ing and serve hot. Prep Cook Serves 30 min 30 min 4-6

400g bas­mati rice, soaked in 2 litres wa­ter with 1 tbsp salt for 30 min­utes

60g un­salted but­ter 1kg sus­tain­ably sourced raw king prawns, peeled and rinsed

100ml ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil

3 medium onions (about 450g in to­tal), peeled and finely chopped

3 curry leaves

1 tsp ground turmeric 2 tsp b’zar (Ara­bian spice mix)

1 tbsp ground dried limes

3-4 whole cloves 2 medium toma­toes (about 200g in to­tal), diced into small cubes 3 tbsp tomato paste A few sprigs flat-leaf pars­ley, most of the stems dis­carded, then finely chopped

A few sprigs co­rian­der, most of the stems dis­carded, then finely chopped

3 gar­lic cloves, peeled and crushed to a fine paste


Soak the rice and set aside. Mean­while, saute the prawns in the but­ter in a fry­ing pan over a medium heat for two min­utes, then set aside.

Saute the onions in the olive oil in a large pot over a medium heat for about five min­utes, un­til golden, then add the rest of the in­gre­di­ents and stir for a minute or so.

Add 500ml wa­ter and bring to a boil. Drain the rice, add to the pan, salt to taste, then turn the heat down and sim­mer for 10 min­utes. Ar­range the prawns over the rice, wrap the lid with a clean kitchen towel and re­place over the pot. Steam the rice and prawns for 10 more min­utes.

Stir the prawns into the rice and fluff with a fork, trans­fer to a serv­ing plate and serve hot.

The Guardian aims to pub­lish recipes for fish rated as sus­tain­able by the Marine Con­ser­va­tion So­ci­ety’s Good Fish Guide

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