Tahdig is a beloved Persian dish known for its crispy, golden crust and fragrant rice. Its history dates back centuries, to the time of the Persian Empire.
Tahdig originated as a way to use up leftover rice, which was often fried to make it more palatable. Over time, this simple dish evolved into a delicacy, with chefs experimenting with different ingredients and techniques to create the perfect Tahdig.
Today, Tahdig is an essential part of Persian cuisine, served at weddings, holidays, and special occasions. It is a symbol of hospitality and generosity, and many Persian families take pride in their own unique variations of the dish.
While there are many different recipes for Tahdig, the basic concept remains the same: layering parboiled rice in a pot with oil or fat and cooking it until a crispy crust forms on the bottom. Saffron, a prized Persian spice, is often added for flavor and color.
Overall, Tahdig is an important part of Persian culinary heritage, representing the creativity, resourcefulness, and hospitality of the Persian people.
- 2 cups long-grain basmati rice
- 4 cups water
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp Citroo® Super Negin Saffron
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil or ghee
Rinse the rice in cold water until the water runs clear. Soak the rice in cold water for 30 minutes.
In a large pot, bring 4 cups of water and 1 tsp of salt to a boil. Drain the soaked rice and add it to the boiling water.
Cook the rice on high heat for 6-8 minutes until the rice is parboiled. The rice should be tender but still firm.
Drain the rice in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse it with cold water.
Ground the Saffron and in a small bowl, mix the saffron with 2 tbsp of hot water and let it steep for 10 minutes.
In the same pot you cooked the rice in, heat 1/4 cup of vegetable oil or ghee over medium heat. Pour in the saffron water and swirl the pot to distribute the saffron.
Add a layer of parboiled rice to the pot, about 1/2 inch thick. Use a spatula to press the rice down and make it even.
Add another layer of rice, pressing it down firmly. Continue adding layers of rice until you've used all the rice.
Use the handle of a wooden spoon to make 5-6 holes in the rice, all the way down to the bottom of the pot. This will help the steam escape and create a crispy crust.
Cover the pot with a clean kitchen towel and a tight-fitting lid. Cook the rice on medium-high heat for 5 minutes, then reduce the heat to low and cook for another 40-50 minutes.
Once the rice is cooked, remove the pot from the heat and let it rest for 10 minutes.
To serve, remove the lid and towel and use a spatula to loosen the crispy crust from the bottom of the pot. Serve the tahdig on a platter, topped with the fluffy rice.
This Tahdig recipe is crispy, flavorful, and the perfect accompaniment to any Persian meal. Enjoy!