People always ask me about my rice and I will proudly confess that I use a rice cooker. I love to make saffron rice as a side dish for Mediterranean flavors as it enhances any type of meat or vegetable braise. If you have a rice cooker and have never used it, now is the time to dust it off. If you do not have one, you can buy one for under $20 and it will be one of the best kitchen gadgets you ever purchased.
3 cups of rice of choice (short grain or arborio for a more moist rice and basmati or long grain for fluffier, more firm rice)
4 cups of water (the water should be an inch above the rice when in the pot)
1/2 teaspoon of salt
2 tablespoons of EVOO
3 to 4 threads of saffron or one teaspoon of tumeric powder
Pick through the rice for small stones or imperfections. Rinse one time and add to the rice cooker. Then add all ingredients and stir. Press the “on” button and wait till the light comes on. This will take approximately 30 to 40 minutes depending on the type of rice and amount of rice. Please note that brown rice will require at least an extra cup of water and longer cooking time.
Once complete, the rice cooker should be turned off and disconnected and allowed to cool for 10 minutes. Then scoop the rice into a large platter and decorate with fresh herbs or toasted pine nuts or sliced almonds, pistachios, or all of the above. This is the perfect accompaniment for meat, fish or veggie stews and is great the next day if reheated in the microwave with a cover along with a few sprinkles of water for moisture.
Make your favorite stew or grilled items and enjoy!