I’d forgotten how delicious Sholleh Zard is but was reminded at a Norooz gathering last weekend and I thought I’d make it and share the recipe with you.
Sholleh Zard is a bright yellow sweet rice pudding and everywhere in the world seems to have their own versions. In Iran it is made with zaafaran and rose-water and best eaten cold although some regions in Iran like to serve it warm. The ingredients are a wonderful blend of flavors that is typically Persian and will lift your spirits.
Here is a very simple recipe which serves 6-8 people.
- 1 cup of basmati rice ( you can use any rice)
- 6 cups of water
- a pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup of rose-water
- 1.5 or 2 cups of sugar
- 250 gr’s of butter
- 1/2 teaspoon of saffron
- 3/4 cup of sliced almonds
- 1/2 teaspoon of cardamom ( optional)
- Pistachios to garnish
- Grind the saffron with a little sugar and dissolve in about 50 ml’s of hot water. Cover and leave to stand, stir occasionally.
- Rinse the rice under cold water under the water runs clear.
- Bring the 6 cups of water to the boil, add a pinch of salt and then add the rice.
- Cook the rice on a low to medium heat until the water has evaporated and the rice becomes mushy. You will need to stir occasionally to avoid any burning. This might take between 45 mins to an hour.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the saffron, rose-water, sugar almonds and cardamom.
- Return to the lowest heat setting you can, cover and leave to simmer for about another 45 mins or until the pudding is thick and creamy and coats the back of a spoon.
- Stir it occasionally and you may need to add more water as you go.
- You can continue to cook until the rice becomes completely smooth but we like ours with a little form.
Pour into your serving dish, usually a shallow bowl or into individual bowls if preferred and allow to cool. Garnish with cinnamon and pistachios before serving.
Sholleh Zard should be stored in the fridge and can be kept for between 4 -6 days.