Don’t worry — that’s not mustard in the picture. That would be sacrilege. It’s a saffron aïoli with toasted garlic and ginger, and the characteristic color comes from saffron. In other words, it’s fancy mayo. There will definitely be some leftover (there isn’t really a way to make less, unless you don’t mind going to the trouble of splitting an egg evenly; ratios are ratios after all), but it shouldn’t be hard to think of ways to use up the rest. Using only extra-virgin olive oil would make for a bitter mayo, so it's toned down with an equal measure of canola oil.
Make this for the special someone in your life, and I guarantee you, the fireworks will happen — or at the very least, the house will smell like bacon and toasted garlic. Which is never a bad thing.
Click here to see the Bacon: It's What's for Dinner story.
Throughout the centuries saffron has been a symbol of wealth and elegance. Cleopatra used saffron water to keep her skin soft. Roman Emperor Nero sprinkled the streets with saffron water to honor his return to Rome. Persians considered it a tonic for the heart as it was thought to alleviate melancholy. (However, they believed too much of it could produce a state of euphoria and even death from too much laughter!).
A spice consisting of the dried stigmas of the saffron crocus, it was introduced into Spain by the Arabs, and later cultivated in Mediterranean regions and elsewhere in Europe. In France, it was grown by “safraniers” in the sixteenth century. In England, the Essex town of Saffron Walden became the center of saffron cultivation.
Rice was introduced into Italy during the Middle Ages by Venetian or Genoese merchants who traded with the east. The earliest documentation of rice cultivation in Italy dates to 1475. Risotto is specific to northern Italy where rice paddies are abundant. — Maite Gomez-Réjon.
Adapted from the ArtBites tour of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
The radiant orange spice, saffron, has been studied and shown to be as effective as certain antidepressant drugs such as imipramine and fluoxetine. Saffron also helps with mood swings and depression associated with PMS. Make tea with a pinch of saffron and experience these amazing effects.
Read more about 12 Teas That Boost Your Mood.
I do love a good egg salad, but this time, I wanted to put a little twist on it. That's right: This egg salad has been French-ified. Frenchied? Frenched? Anyway, I thought the results were pretty darn good. Slather it on a baguette (obviously), top it with some arugula and chopped olives and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil, and you'll be in egg salad heaven.
I've made a lot of hummus in my life, but this recipe really takes the cake as far as flavor. The caramelized onions with hints of saffron and garlic are so delicious you'll definitely be coming back for more. Enjoy with pita chips, or if you're looking for something healthier chop up some carrots and cucumbers.
In Persian cuisine, this is traditionally a peasant dish made with lamb called 'tah cheen' because tah means “bottom” and cheen means “to layer"; and the dish is essentially layers of rice and meat. The bottom of the pan produces the delicious, flavorful and crispy layer of rice called tah-deeg that gives it the look of a golden brown cake. This recipe is made with boneless chicken, but fish, lamb or a whole chicken are other options. In the Persian tradition, tah cheen should be paired with yogurt, herbs and eaten immediately so that the tah-deeg does not become soggy.As most Persians cooks do not use measurements or recipes because they develop their own during a lifetime of cooking, the cuisine is both challenging and rewarding for the novice cook. A blending of scribbled notes, directions, and tips from my parents and grandmother along with the cookbook A Taste of Persia by Najmieh Batmanglij produced this recipe for tah cheen.Good luck and enjoy!
Add vegetables and this doubles as a perfectly good summer soup. I use asparagus stock here because this sauce is going to accompany my Asparagus Paella, but feel free to replace it with basic stock.
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Recipe adapted from Ian Hancock, We Are the Romani peopleGaluški is a lovely dessert of marzipan dumplings served in milk, sort of like a warm cereal. Because my mother hates marzipan, we used to just eat basmati rice with lots of milk, sugar, and cinnamon, which, if you haven’t tried it, is also quite lovely. In this decadent version of Galuški, the vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and saffron perfume the milk and complement the almonds’ delicate flavor. Pairs well with Papusza’s poetry and “Romani tea.”Read How to Eat Like a Real Gypsy here
For those of you who have ever eaten from a "halal cart," the title of this rice recipe probably seems like a bold statement. If the reference means nothing to you, don't worry — before moving to New York, I wouldn't have had a clue either.
A halal cart is a street vendor that, at a minimum, sells two things, and two things very well: chicken over rice and lamb (or gyro) over rice. Most offer the option to wrap up the same fixings — meat, lettuce, generally out-of-season tomatoes, white sauce, and a bit of smoky paprika-based hot sauce — in a pita as well, minus the rice. It sounds simple, but done right, it's absolutely delicious, addictive, and satisfying. The best part? You walk away full after spending just $5.
Some also sell knishes (another mysterious New York thing), kebabs, and falafel. Others even offer pretzels, hot dogs, chestnuts, and Philly cheesesteaks. In other words, if you can walk away with it, they probably have it. (I have yet, however, to see one that sells pizza.)
The rice, in theory, is basmati. Some vendors offer just white rice, others will offer "yellow rice," while some offer a mix of the two. It sometimes has a few peas in it and perhaps some cooked tomato. Some of them cheap out on the rice, though, and offer something that tastes suspiciously like Uncle Ben's. The mystifying thing is: What exactly makes the yellow rice yellow? Is it turmeric? Is it saffron? (Probably not.) A friend recently pointed out that it might be food coloring.
We decided to take the guesswork out of the equation and make a new and improved version of halal-cart rice that you won't get on the street. This version is flavored with saffron, freshly shucked peas, and ripe tomato — the perfect base for grilled chicken, fish, or lamb. Whoever says rice is bland is about to have their world rocked.
Click here to see Rice Made Sexy — 5 Great Dinner Recipes.
In paella, the focus is rice cooked in an intense stock, with meat adding flavor, but meat has taken over and often the paella emerges with the meat cooked perfectly but the rice overcooked and mushy. Dirt Candy's paella focuses on cooking the bomba rice perfectly, and we use a toasted rice crisp to get the sweetness of socarrat into the dish.
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