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Author Notes: Baghali polow, a rice dish packed with fresh green dill and fava beans is a dish that often makes an appearance during Nowruz. Fresh, green herbs are a mark of spring the world over and this is no exception among any Nowruz celebration. Tahdig, a saffron spiked brown crust, that is created to the bottom of the rice, makes this dish extra special. This month, we've included a pinch of the most expensive spice in the world- saffron threads- in this month's spice box. A little bit goes a long way here- a few threads of this exquisitely flavored, delicate rice, is just enough to flavor this special rice dish. —RawSpiceBar
- 1 piece RawSpiceBar's Saffron Threads
- 3 cups long grain basmati rice (white or brown)
- 1 pound frozen fava beans (or 2 lbs fresh)
- 3 tablespoons yogurt
- 4 cups dill
- 4 pieces cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 2 1/2 tablespoons sea salt
- Rinse rice in strainer through warm water. Drain and repeat 4 more times. If using fresh fava beans, shell and remove outer layer
- Bring 8 cups water and 2 tbsp salt to a boil in a large nonstick saucepan. Add rinsed rice and let boil, 8 minutes. Strain and rinse.
- Place saffron in small bowl with 2 tbsp boiling water, set aside for 5 minutes. In medium bowl, add yogurt, pinch salt, saffron water and 1 1/2 cups rice.
- Line deep 8-10" saucepan with circle of parchment paper, place on medium-high heat. Add butter, olive oil and 2 tbsp water on top of parchment until butter melts. Add yogurt mixture on top, smooth even with spatula. Add fava beans, dill and garlic to remaining rice, toss to combine. Gently transfer rice, cup by cup, to saucepan, carefully forming a mound.
- Wrap lid of saucepan with kitchen towel and cover firmly to prevent steam from escaping. Turn heat to high for 2-3 minutes until steam visibly puffs out of pot. Decrease heat to low and cook for 70 minutes. Remove from heat and place pot in cold water for a few minutes- do not uncover.
- Uncover, loosen crust from bottom of saucepan. Place platter over top of saucepan and invert pan to remove rice. Serve with braised lamb and mast-o-khiar.
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