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Persian Rice
February 08, 2015

This "Persian Rice" recipe is how rice is prepared in Iran. I will add the following notes: (i) rinsing the starch out of the rice is of paramount importance and is usually done by swishing the rice around in a bowl of water and draining several times until the rinse water is clear (described as "rinsed rice" in this recipe, and shown as water running over rice in a sieve in the video); (ii) cumin in the potato crust ("tahdig") may be a regional variation but it is not common (at least not in Tehran) (sounds good though); (iii) sometimes the pot of steamed rice is just inverted over a plate with the potato crust left in place. If you want to do this, you need to have a few tricks up your sleeve to stop the potatoes and rice from sticking to the pot. For the potatoes, rinse the starch off the slices, dry them, and slide them around in the hot oil (so they are not sticking) before adding the rice on top of them. For the rice, use a wide spatula or egg lifter to mound the rice in the center of the pot (away from the sides) before steaming it. Before inverting the pot of steamed rice over a plate, put the bottom of the hot pot of rice (after steaming) in a sink of cold water to loosen the potato crust; (iv) always put a towel under the pot lid (as described in the recipe) or you will have soggy rice; (v) it is not necessary to add butter when steaming the rice (common but optional). Kudos to Chef John for very clearly explaining this method of preparing rice (video)! Nice work!

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