West London is the hub of Persian disapora, boasting restaurants and supermarkets which attract compatriots and Londoners alike. Here is my family’s favorite Persian recipe, crispy saffron rice layered with meat, onions, sultanas and pine nuts. I serve mine with garlic yoghurt. Tachin can be made in the oven, however the quicker option is to make it on the hob. It cuts waiting time by a third!
2 Cups long grain / Basmati Rice – pre-soaked for an hour then drained.
¼ tsp Saffron – left to steep in 1/2 tbsp hot water
Meat – Chicken thighs or Lamb braised with sliced onions in a little water, seasoned, bones discarded then shredded into chunks. Reserve meat juices. If you’re feeling lazy, use the meat from a rotisserie chicken.
¾ Cup Yoghurt
2 Egg Yolks
½ Cup Butter
1 glug of Veg oil.
Sultanas & toasted Pine nuts
Salt & Pepper
Parboil the rice for 6 minutes in salted water, drain and rinse with cool water.
Mix half of this rice with yoghurt, egg yolks, saffron and season with salt and pepper.
Melt butter in non stick saucepan, adding a glug of oil and ¼ cup water. When fats starts to spit add the yoghurty rice, pressing down against the heat of the fat.
Place your meat chunks on top of this, with the pine nuts, sultanas and onions, then the remaining rice. Dribble some of the meat juices over the top.
Cover with a dish cloth wrapped lid, leaving to steam for 10 minutes.
Turn saucepan upside down onto a serving dish, and serve with cool plain yogurt.