- 2 pounds of salmon
- 2-3 teaspoons olive oil
- 1/8-1/4 teaspoon ground saffron
- Sea salt and black pepper to taste
- 1 lemon, halved
- Pomegranate seeds for garnish (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 218 degrees C and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Place salmon on the baking sheet and use a silicone brush to spread the olive oil.
- Sprinkle with some saffron and spread with the brush. Add enough saffron until the salmon turns an orange color.
- Season the salmon with salt and pepper to taste and squeeze half of the lemon all over. Please the other half of the lemon cut side down on the baking sheet.
- Bake the salmon for 15-25 minutes or until cooked to your liking (I like it to be at an internal temperature of 52 degrees C).
- Squeeze the roasted lemon on top (optional) and garnish with pomegranate seeds. Enjoy!
Persian Rice with Raisins, Cherries, and Pomegranate
- 3 cups basmati rice
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
- 1/2 yellow onion, finely diced
- 1 cup dried fruit (I did a combination of golden raisins, thompson raisins, and dried tart cherries)
- 1/4 teaspoon turmeric plus more
- Pinch of fine grain sea salt
- 1 cup pomegranate seeds
- 1/8 teaspoon ground saffron
- 1-1.5 tablespoons butter, diced (optional)
For the garnish:
- 1/4 cup nuts (I did a combination of slivered almonds and roughly chopped pistachios)
- 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
- 1/4 cup of dried fruit-onion mixture
- Heat up 1 tablespoon of oil to a large pan. Add the diced onion and sauté on medium heat until the onions are tender and golden, lowering the heat if they start to burn. Add the dried fruit, a few dashes of turmeric, and a pinch of sea salt. Sauté for a few more minutes and remove from the heat. Reserve about 1/4 of this mixture into a bowl.
- Place rice in a large non stick pot and fill with tap water so that rice is completely covered plus more.
- Use your hands to swirl the rice around and then drain the water. Add fresh water to the pot, rinse rice, and drain again. Repeat this process one more time.
- Next, add enough water into the pot so that the rice is completely covered plus more (about 1-2 inches above the rice), about 6 cups of water.
- Add two tablespoons of kosher salt to the rice and stir.
- Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Once the rice comes to a boil, lower the heat so that the rice is simmering and cook for 6-10 minutes or until the rice has just lost its crunch (keep tasting a few grains to check for doneness). The goal is to par-cook the rice. How long it takes depends on the brand of basmati rice you are using.
- Drain the rice into a colander.
- Pour some cold water around the perimeter of the rice and use a spoon to gently toss the rice to release some steam.
- Place 1/8 teaspoon of ground saffron, and 1/2 teaspoon of water into a small bowl. Mix until combined.
- In another bowl, add 2 cups of cups along with the saffron-water mixture and a drizzle of olive oil. Mix well.
- To the remaining rice mixture in the colander, add the dried fruit mixture and 1 cup of pomegranate seeds. Gently toss to combine.
- Rinse and dry the pot and return to heat.
- Add 1/3 cup of olive oil to the pot. Let it heat up for a minute and add ~1/4 teaspoon of turmeric. Swirl the pot to mix the turmeric into the oil. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the oil in a bowl.
- Pour the reserved saffron rice into the pot and spread into an even layer using a spoon.
- Then, add the rice-dried fruit mixture on top. Use a knife to poke a few holes in the rice, about 3/4 of the way.
- Drizzle over the reserved 2 tablespoons of oil (on top and around the perimeter of the rice) and dot the rice with the diced butter.
- Cover with the lid and cook on medium heat until steam is released when the lid is lifted, about 10 minutes.
- Place a kitchen towel (or double folded paper towel) under the lid to reduce condensation.
- Cook the rice for approximately 1-1.5 hours on low heat until the bottom of the rice is crispy.
- While rice cooks, combine the reserved 1/4 cup of dried fruit with the nuts and pomegranate seeds.
- Flip the rice onto a platter and garnish with the fruit-need mixture. Enjoy!