Instant Pot Saffron Rice with Currants and Pine Nuts

Instant Pot Saffron Rice with Currants and Pine Nuts

“Yellow rice,” as I called it then, was my dinner request. Just yellow rice!

The stand-in name was just about right, at least in this instance, because the rice I so craved was a mix my mom would make from a little foil packet purchased at the store. I’m not sure what exactly was in that mix, though I have a hunch: yellow coloring, natural flavors, and salt. It felt like I could eat that rice for days without getting tired of it.

This version of yellow rice is not that yellow rice. It’s made with Saffron—real saffron— and studded with pine nuts and currants. It’s beautiful, and it' tastes beautiful too. I could eat it for days without getting tired of it. At first bite, I was immediately transported back to Mom’s yellow rice. It’s a bowl of nostalgia, but also global flavors. It’s vibrant, and homey. And, it’s made in your Instant Pot! (affiliate link)

(It seems like as a kid, I often identified foods by their color: get the recipe for grown-up Pink Sauce here).

Instant Pot Saffron Rice with Currants and Pine Nuts
Instant Pot Saffron Rice with Currants and Pine Nuts

For a video of this recipe, click here!

Instant Pot Saffron Rice with Currants and Pine Nuts

Published May 21, 2019 by
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Serves: 6   |    Active Time: 30 minutes



Ingredients:

  • 2 cups white rice (such as basmati)
  • 2-1/2 cups water
  • 5 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced small
  • 4 pinches saffron
  • 1 teaspoon salt 
  • 1/3 cup currants
  • 1/3 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1/3 cup minced parsley, plus more for garnish

  • Directions:

    1. Turn Instant Pot to sauté setting and heat 1 tablespoon of butter. Add diced onion, and sauté, stirring occasionally, until translucent.
    2. In a mortar and pestle, grind the saffron so that it is almost a powder—a few larger pieces is OK.
    3. Add rice, water, remaining 4 tablespoons of butter, saffron, and salt to pot. Stir.
    4. Secure lid on Instant Pot, and set to “Rice” setting, with the vent in the closed position. Timer should set to 12 minutes.
    5. When the timer goes off, release the pressure. Add currants, pine nuts, and parsley to the pot. Use a fork or spatula stir everything together, fluffing the rice as you go.
    6. Serve hot, sprinkled with additional parsley for garnish.

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    Fried Fish with Lemon-Butter Sauce

    Fried Fish with Lemon-Butter Sauce

    There is nothing fancy about fried fish drizzled with lemon and butter—but it can look (and taste) awfully nice topped with capers and sitting next to a fresh salad (or yeah, crispy potatoes 😋). Start with a white, flaky, mild fish like barramundi or cod. Fillets should be less than 1/2-inch think, because the cooking goes fast! This recipe can be gluten-free or -full, use which ever flour (and breadcrumbs) your prefer. Opt for breadcrumbs rather than panko; it just works better. Use plenty of oil in the pan, and let it get hot enough. Best when eaten right away! (Though if there are leftovers, try heating the fish in a toaster oven, which will keep it crispy).

    Fried Fish with Lemon-Butter Sauce

    Fried Fish with Lemon-Butter Sauce

    Published May 14, 2019 by
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    Serves: 4   |    Active Time: 30 minutes



    Ingredients:


    For the fish:
  • 4 thin white fish fillets (such as barramundi or tilapia)
  • Sprinkle of salt
  • 1/4 cup measure-for-measure gluten-free flour blend (or regular AP flour)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free bread crumbs - such as Schar (or regular bread crumbs)
  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil

  • For the lemon-butter sauce:
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Zest and juice from 1 lemon
  • 2-3 tablespoons capers

  • Directions:

    1. Sprinkle each fillet of fish with salt.
    2. Whisk egg in a bowl until frothy. Place flour on one plate and bread crumbs on another.
    3. Working with one fish fillet at a time, lightly coat each fillet in flour, and then dip in egg. Roll in bread crumbs, and set aside.
    4. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, place fillets in oil (if oil dies not sizzle, it is not hot enough). Cook fish for 3-4 minutes on the first side, and then flip and cook for another 3-4 minutes. Fish should be golden on the outside and opaque all the way through. Remove from heat.
    5. Place butter and garlic in a small sauce pan. Heat over medium-low. When butter is melted, remove from heat. Add lemon zest and juice, along with capers, and stir.
    6. Place fish on serving plates and spoon lemon-butter sauce over each fillet.

    Fried Fish with Lemon-Butter Sauce
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    Cold Rice Noodle Bowls with Sriracha Tofu, Thai Basil & Tahini Sauce

    Cold Rice Noodle Bowls with Sriracha Tofu, Thai Basil & Tahini Sauce

    I’m trying something a little different today: a consolidated blog post. While I love writing, sometimes getting a blog post drafted (and published) is a chore. And, I have heard so many people—from friends to general internet chatter—say they wish it was easier to get to the damn recipe! So, here you are. This is an ingredient-heavy recipe, but once you’ve made it once you’ll see it’s quite easy to throw together. Cold rice noodles make a great lunch for enjoying in the sun, on the patio. Fresh herbs, tahini, and spicy Sriracha are bold and bright. Hope you enjoy!

    Cold Rice Noodle Bowls with Sriracha Tofu, Thai Basil & Tahini Sauce
    Cold Rice Noodle Bowls with Sriracha Tofu, Thai Basil & Tahini Sauce

    Cold Rice Noodle Bowls with Sriracha Tofu, Thai Basil & Tahini Sauce

    Published May 7, 2019 by
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    Serves: 4   |    Active Time: 30 minutes



    Ingredients:

    For the Sriracha tofu:
  • 1 pound extra firm or super firm tofu, drained
  • 2 tablespoons Sriracha
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce

  • For the tahini dressing:
  • ½ cup tahini
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic

  • For the bowls:
  • 1 eight ounce package Mai Fun rice noodles
  • About 2 cups spring greens
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced small
  • 1 cucumber, diced small
  • 1 large carrot, julienned
  • 1 daikon radish, julienned
  • 3 sprigs Thai basil
  • 3 tablespoons fresh mint leaves, minced
  • 3 tablespoons roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
  • Optional garnish: toasted sesame seeds and lime wedges

  • Directions:

    1. Preheat oven to 475°F and fit a baking sheet with parchment paper.
    2. Place Sriracha, olive oil, and soy sauce in a medium mixing bowl and whisk to combine. Cut tofu into 1-inch cubes and place in bowl. Use a spatula to gently turn tofu in sauce until coated. Using tongs or a fork, move tofu to prepared baking pan, leaving at least 1/2 inch of space between pieces. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Using tongs, flip tofu to the other side. Bake for an additional 12-15 minutes, then place pan aside to cool and turn off oven.
    3. Meanwhile, prepare tahini dressing: place tahini, maple syrup, rice vinegar, water, ginger, and garlic in a small bowl and whisk until fully incorporated (note: at first, tahini might not want to mix in, but eventually it will become a smooth sauce!).
    4. Cook rice noodles according to package. Place cooked rice noodles in a fine mesh sieve and rinse with cold water.
    5. Assemble bowls: divide spring greens among serving dishes. Top with rice noodles. Add red pepper, cucumber, carrot, and radish. Top with tofu, then garnish with basil, mint, peanuts, sesame seeds, and lime wedges. Drizzle with tahini sauce. Serve.

    Cold Rice Noodle Bowls with Sriracha Tofu, Thai Basil & Tahini Sauce
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