This northern Iranian specialty is topped with dried barberries, a tart local fruit. This recipe first appeared in our March 2012 issue, with Anissa Helou's story The Land of Bread and Spice.
Baked Rice with Barberries (Tah Chin)
This northern Iranian specialty is topped with dried barberries, a tart local fruit.
3 cups long-grain white rice
2 tbsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste
1 1⁄2 cups plain yogurt
1⁄2 cup canola oil, plus more
1⁄2 tsp. crushed saffron
4 egg yolks
3 tbsp. unsalted butter
3⁄4 cup barberries or dried cranberries
1⁄2 cup currants
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. rose water
Rinse rice in a strainer under running water until water runs clear. Transfer to a bowl with 2 tbsp. salt, cover with water, and soak for 2 hours; drain. Boil 6 cups water in a 4-qt. saucepan over high heat. Add rice; cook until it begins to rise to the surface, about 12 minutes. Drain and rinse until water runs clear.
Heat oven to 350°. Transfer rice to a bowl; stir in yogurt, oil, saffron, yolks, and salt. Pour rice mixture into a greased 9″ x 13″ baking dish; smooth top and cover with foil.Bake rice until a golden-brown crust forms on bottom, about 1 hour, 45 minutes. Uncover, and run a knife between rice and dish to loosen crust; place a platter over dish and invert. Cut rice into squares.
Heat butter in a 10″ skillet over medium-high heat. Add barberries, currants, and sugar; cook until hot. Add rose water; cook for 1 minute; remove from heat. Garnish rice with berries and currants.