سبزی پلو با ماهی Sabzi polow (herbed rice) and crispy pan fried mahi (fish) is one of the main traditional meals for Nowruz - Persian New Year. There's only few weeks left before Nowruz and I'm all ready for the cold winter to be over. The weather is still very cold, the grass is brown and there are no blossoms on the trees. However, yesterday I made Sabzi polow - herbe rice with fried fish. These are traditionally served on New Year's day.
Sabzi Polow Mahi - Herb Rice with Fish
2 cups long grain (basmati) rice
1 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 cup chopped fresh dill
1 cup chopped fresh coriander
1 cup chopped fresh scallions (green parts only), use tareh instead if you can find them in markets where you live
3-4 garlic cloves
1/2 teaspoon saffron dissolved in 4 tablespoons hot water
Vegetable oil or butter
- Clean, wash, dry and finely chop the herbs and mix them together in a large bowl. It’s better to use fresh herbs for this dish; however there is always the dried sabzi polow herb mix that you can find in Iranian grocery stores.
- Wash the rice with cool water a few times. Soak in 8 cups of water, add 4 tablespoons of salt and set aside for a couple of hours. In a large non-stick pan, bring 3 quarts of water to a rapid boil. Drain the rice and add to the pot. Bring water to back to a boil for about 5-7 minutes. Test to see if the rice is ready. Rice should be firm in the center and soft on the outside. Strain the rice using a colander and rinse with cool water.
- Wash and dry the pot and return to heat, add 4 tablespoons of vegetable oil and a few drops of liquid saffron. With a large spatula place the rice into the pot, place a layer of rice and a layer of vegetables building it into a pyramid shape. Place the peeled garlic cloves in between rice. Make 4 holes in the rice with the bottom of the spatula to release the steam.
- Cover and cook for 7-10 minutes on medium-high heat until rice is steaming. Pour 2 tablespoons of oil and 2-3 tablespoons of water over the rice, lower the heat, cover and steam the rice for 50 minutes on medium-low heat.With a large scoop take some rice from the top, mix in with the dissolved saffron and set aside. Serve rice on a platter; sprinkle the mixture of rice and saffron on top.
Mahi - Fish
1 cup flour (to coat fish)
A pinch of red pepper
A pinch of turmeric powder
Salt and black pepper
1 large Lime
- Season fish on both sides, lightly coat the fillet with flour and shake off any excess flour.
- Heat 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a skillet over medium heat, place fish in the pan and fry until golden brown and crispy on both sides.
- Place the fried fish on a serving platter, squeeze lime juice over the fillets.