[caption id="attachment_4049" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Zafrani Pulao"][/caption]
Zafrani pulao, which means the saffron rice. The word saffron is derived from the latin word safranum via the 12th century old French term safran. Safranum derives via Persian (zaferan). Few argue that it ultimately came from the Arabic word Zafaran which meant “having golden stigmas”. The latin safranum is also the source of the Italian zafferano and spanishy azafran.
The Zafran or saffron’s aroma is described by connoisseurs as reminiscent of metallic honey with grassy or hay like notes while its taste has also been noted as hay like and sweet. Saffron contributes a wonderful luminous yellow orange coloring to foods and widely used in Iranian (Persian), Arab, Central Asian, European, Indian, Turkish and Cornish cuisines.
Zafrani pulao is a classic dish that uses saffron to create a nice golden yellow color to the rice that gives an appealing visual appearance to the dish. This dish is made from basmati rice, saffron strands, butter and whole spices and herbs. Saffron rice is found in the cuisines of many countries (in one form or another).
Zafrani pulao is a simple yet delicate dish that usually consists of basmati rice, chicken or vegetable broth, and of course, saffron. While most people think of India when they see this bright yellow dish, many different countries have their own variations of this classic Middle Eastern recipe. It's fairly simple to make rice with saffron but cooked with love and care to keep the rice nice and fluffy and make the zafrani pulao shine.
In making the zafrani rice, one needs to keep in mind that each single rice grain should shine like a diamond. Perhaps the most common recipe includes rice, broth, saffron, and a little salt for seasoning. More exotic recipes can be found throughout the world in areas where saffron is harvested, such as Thailand, Portugal, and the Philippines. Though vegetarian dishes featuring rice and a variety of beans dominate Indian cuisine, India's cooking has also been influenced by traders such as the Arabs and Chinese, and invaders such as the Persians, Moghuls, Turks, British and Portuguese. North Indian food features more dairy and pulses, while South Indian cooking includes more rice, curries, and fruits like coconut. The Zafrani pulao has also been originated from one of these cuisines. This tasty rice dish would go well with a wide variety of dishes from the Indian subcontinent.
The saffon adds such a lovely, bright golden color to the rice, in contrast with the crimson saffron threads dispersed throughout. Saffron rice has a delicate, floral aroma that you can’t duplicate with any other spice. The color yellow symbolized joy for medieval Arabs, who were cultivating saffron in Spain by 960 c.e. Sephardic Jews were equally inspired by the coveted spice, and golden rice became a holiday and Sabbath tradition. This version, made with basmati rice, is punctuated by caramelized onion, currants, and fried almonds.
Saffron is the most precious and expensive spice in the world. Saffron dates back to the ancient Greeks. Saffron adds a unique flavor and exquisite color to the rice. Flavored with onion and garlic, either as a side dish, or as the beginning of your own Paella, Yellow Rice makes every meal a special occasion. Saffron comes from the dried stigmas of the saffron crocus. Typically saffron has a slightly bitter taste and adds a beautiful yellow color to the rice.
To prepare the Zafrani pulao, firstly wash the rice twice and soak in enough water to cover the rice completely for half hour. Take few strands of dried saffron and crush them well and put it in a mixing bowl. To it add little hot milk and mix well. The saffron strands mixed with milk gives a nice yellow color. Keep it aside.
In a pan, add little oil. When oil is hot, add the whole garam masala and cumin seeds or shahi jeera (this makes the pulao elegant), add cashew nuts and raisins and sauté till slightly golden color then add chopped onions and sauté for few mins and add ginger garlic paste. Add salt and sauté. Add chopped coriander and mint leaves to give a nice flavor to the pulao and then add yoghurt and cumin powder. Lastly add the right amount of water as per the quantity of rice soaked and allow boiling. Once the water comes to boil add the soaked rice mix delicately and allow the rice to cook.
When water is almost absorbed you can find small holes made on the top that’s when lower the heat and sprinkle some fried onions on the top, saffron color and top it with butter. Sprinkle some pomegranate seeds and close the lid and let it cook on a very low heat for another 5 min. serve. The Zafrani pulao can be served with kababs or kormas and any vegetarian or non vegetarian curry or gravy. It is a super healthy rice dish with distinctive flavor of saffron.
You can prepare this wonderful dish for any party, get together, pot luck dinners or lunches. I am sure you would also enjoy this wonder dish and watch the making at:
The zafrani pulao is a simple rice dish that ends up a gorgeous yellow color and smells delicious. The flavor of the rice is subtle but you can definitely tell it is not just plain rice, and the color is gorgeous.
There are 3 secrets making this rice. First, use good quality saffron. Here’s the key to buying saffron. The threads should be almost all bright red. If you see yellow, that means when the threads were harvested, they picked the flower portion that was STIGMA (a.k.a. expensive good stuff) and STIGMA (bad, tasteless shit). Another note on using saffron – you should soak the threads in a little bit of hot milk to really open up the spice and release its flavor. Next fry onions before steaming the rice. It gives rice an earthy, caramelized onion flavor. Lastly the salt, everything tastes better with salt. This rice comes alive when you add something salty to it.
Saffron appears in Moorish, Mediterranean and Asian cuisines. Its most common function is to colour rice yellow, as in festive Indian pilaus and risotto Milanese, where its delicate flavour make it the most famous of Italian rice dishes. It combines well with fish and seafood, infamous as a key ingredient of Spanish paella as well as bouillabaisse. In England, saffron is probably best known for its use in Cornish saffron buns where it is paired with dried fruit in a yeast cake.
Coming from the dried stigmas of the saffron crocus, it takes 75,000 blossoms or 225,000 hand-picked stigmas to make a single pound which explains why it is the world’s most expensive spice. A native of the Mediterranean, saffron is now imported primarily from Spain, where Muslims had introduced it in the 8th century along with rice and sugar. Saffron is generally considered the best, though Kashmir now rivals this reputation. Saffron is also cultivated in India, Turkey, China and Iran.
In India its color is considered the epitome of beauty and is the official color of Buddhist robes. Saffron was used to scent the baths and public halls of Imperial Rome. The Romans initially brought saffron to England, though it was lost to them in the Dark Ages. It is claimed that in the 14th century a pilgrim to the Holy Land, smuggled back one crocus bulb in a hollow staff from which all English saffron supposedly descends.
Saffron is the three stigmas of the saffron crocus. They are delicate and thread-like, strongly perfumed, with an aroma of honey and pungent bitter-honey taste. Because of its expense, intense flavor, and strong dying properties, very little saffron is required for culinary purposes and the key is to distribute it evenly throughout the dish being prepared. It can be crushed to a fine powder in a mortar and pestle. It is easier however, to steep the saffron in hot water— a pinch to a cup will create the desired flavor and color. Good saffron should expand on contact with the water and a cup should be sufficient for 0.5 kg (1 lb) of rice.
Powdered saffron is added directly to the required ingredients of a dish, though we recommend against buying saffron powdered, as it is so frequently adulterated. A pound (454 grams) of dry saffron requires 50,000–75,000 flowers, the equivalent of a football field's area of cultivation (110,000-170,000 flowers or two football fields for a kilogram). Forty hours of labor are needed to pick 150,000 flowers. Stigmas are dried quickly upon extraction and (preferably) sealed in airtight containers
Medicinally, saffron has a long history as part of traditional healing; modern medicine has also discovered saffron as having anticarcinogenic (cancer-suppressing), anti-mutagenic (mutation-preventing), immunomodulating, and antioxidant-like properties. Early studies show that saffron may protect the eyes from the direct effects of bright light and retinal stress apart from slowing down macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa. Saffron has also been used as a fabric dye, particularly in China and India, and in perfumery.
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Author : Admin
Published On : Dec 27, 2007
Preparation Time: 7 min
Recipe Type :
Cooking Time :
Standing Time : 5-8 mins
Yield : 4 (4 servings)
Ingredient : Rice
Description : safron rice
Recipe of Zafrani Pulao
Rice (long, grained)
ginger garlic paste
pomogranate seeds ripe
Directions | How to make Zafrani Pulao
Wash rice twice and soak in just enough water to cover it for half an hour. Drain excess water.
heat oil add cimin nuts and onions as shown and saute for few min add ginger garlic paste
add salt biryani masala
add water and when simmering add rice mix once and cook covered
when warter is almost absorbed top it with fried onion , safron color and pomogranate seeds
top of with little butter
let it steam for another 5 min
serve with kababs,kormas and curries