This is one of my favourite ways to cook rice. This recipe comes from my book
Citrus & Spice (see Books). Iíve
given the recipe for two servings, as it allows the greatest freedom when
Although Iíve given the weight of the rice below, the
easiest way to cook basmati rice is to allow ĺ cup rice for 2 people or 1 cup
if you have hearty appetites. Then
simply double the quantity of water, in other words, 1Ĺ cups or 2 cups
depending on your portion side.
Traditionally, basmati rice is always washed before use and
checked for stones or debris. However, in Britain Tilda basmati rice is so
good, this is no longer necessary.
A pinch of saffron threads
A pinch of salt
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 shallot, finely sliced
135g basmati rice
1 bay leaf, optional
1 Place the
saffron threads in a mortar or small bowl with a pinch of salt and grind to a
powder with a pestle or the back of a teaspoon. If you using a pestle and mortar tip into a
small bowl. Add 300ml hot water and leave to infuse.
2 Set a saucepan over a low heat. Add the oil and, once hot, gently fry the
sliced shallot for 3 minutes or until soft and golden. Stir in the rice and cook for a further
minute or until it looks slightly translucent. Add the saffron water. Cover and turn the heat to high. As soon as the rice boils, reduce the heat to
its lowest setting and leave to simmer for 12-15 minutes or until the water is
absorbed. Turn off the heat and leave
covered for 10 minutes. The rice is
ready when it is fluffy and just past al dente.