Saffron rice recipe With step by step photos – saffron rice is made in many cuisines of the world. Saffron is loved by chefs because of the aroma and the unique taste it adds to any dish. Saffron is one of the most expensive spices grown and used in many parts of the world. This is a low fat, gluten-free and vegan dish.
Saffron also known as Kesar in hindi, is not only added for aroma but also for the fact that it has many health benefits. It is anti-depressant, anti-oxidant and has anti-cancer properties and also acts as an anti-aging agent. It is also good for digestion, blood circulation and good for eyesight.
Just a pinch of saffron is enough to make your dish full of its fragrant sweet aroma and its health benefits.
One of the best ways to have the Indian curries or dals is serving them with rice, preferably steamed basmati rice. However, instead of serving just plain steamed basmati rice, you can perk up your rice by the addition of spices or herbs. These add a lot of depth and flavor not only to the rice but also to the entire meal combination.
Some ways through which you can add a lot of flavor and aroma to the rice is by making:
This kesar rice recipe is very easy to make. just fry the whole spices in oil, add rice and saffron. stir and add water. Let the rice cook till its perfectly done. Just cooked and not overly done.
Addition of saffron gives the rice a light yellow color as shown in below pic. You can also add a pinch of turmeric powder for a slightly rich yellow color.
I served the Saffron rice with Punjabi rajma. This beautiful rice dish can also be served with any Indian curry like vegetable kadai, lauki kofta, paneer butter masala. It will also go well with kadhi and any lentil dish like dal fry, dal tadka etc.
How to make saffron rice
1. Measure all the ingredients and keep ready.
2. Rinse the rice 3 to 4 times in water or till the water runs clear of the starch.
3. Soak the rice for 20 to 30 minutes in enough water.
4. Later, drain all the water and keep the rice aside.
Making saffron rice
5. Heat 1.5 tablespoons ghee or oil in a pan or pot.
6. Add ¾ teaspoon shahjeera (caraway seeds), 2 green cardamoms, 1 tej patta (Indian bay leaf), 1 inch cinnamon stick, 2 cloves and a strand of mace. On a side note, if you are wondering why the tej pasta is green – it is a fresh tej pasta from the balcony garden.
7. Let the whole spices crackle and the aroma of spices will be felt.
8. Add soaked rice.
9. Stir for 1 to 2 minutes very well but gently, so that the ghee coats the rice grains.
10. Crush the saffron with your fingers or in a mortar-pestle.
11. Add the crushed saffron to the rice.
12. Add a pinch of turmeric powder now, if you plan to add it.
13. Stir well.
Cooking saffron rice
14. Add 3 cups of water or as required.
15. Sprinkle salt as required.
16. Cover the pan tightly and let the rice cook until the grains become separately cooked and absorb all the water.
17. Do check the rice for a couple of times when it is cooking.
18. Once done, fluff gently with a fork.
Serve the Saffron rice garnished with coriander or mint leaves with any lentil dish or Indian curry recipes.
More Rice recipes
- 1.5 cups basmati rice
- 2 to 3 generous pinch of saffron (kesar)
- ¾ teaspoon shah jeera (caraway seeds)
- 2 green cardamoms
- 1 tej patta (indian bay leaf)
- 1 inch cinnamon
- 2 cloves
- 1 strand of mace
- 3 to 3.25 cups water
- 1 pinch turmeric - optional
- 1.5 tablespoons ghee or oil
- a few coriander leaves or mint leaves for garnish (optional)
- salt as required
- Rinse the rice for 3 to 4 times in water or till the water runs clear of starch.
- Soak the rice for 20 to 30 mins in water. Drain the water and keep the rice aside.
making saffron rice
- Heat oil or ghee in a deep pan or pot. Add all the whole spices including shahjeera.
- Fry till the spices crackle.
- Then add soaked rice. stir for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Crush the saffron with your fingers or in a mortar-pestle and add these to the rice.
- Add turmeric powder now if you plan to add it. stir.
- Add water along with salt.
- Cover the pan tightly and let the rice cook till the grains become separately cooked and absorb all the water.
- Do check the rice for a couple of times when it is cooking. Once done, fluff gently with a fork.
- Serve the saffron rice garnished with coriander or mint leaves with any dal or indian curry.