Adas Polo (Rice With Lentils) from Iran
Makes about 3 Persian or 6 Western servings.
For this recipe, use a medium (about 2.5 litres or 2.5 quarts) pot which
has a lid.
- Rinse the rice several times in warm water to remove the surface
starch. Then soak in lots of cold water, in the refrigerator, overnight.
Drain the rice and set aside.
- Bring 5 cups of water to a rapid boil. Then add the rice and lentils.
Cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the rice from
sticking together. Drain the rice and lentils. Then mix in the raisins,
currants, or dates.
- Spread the oil evenly on the bottom of the pot. Then cover with one
layer of sliced potatoes or eggplant. Sprinkle the rice mixture over the
potatoes or eggplant. It should be heaped in the middle and not touch the
sides of the pot. Cover the underside of the pot lid with a clean dish
towel, and place the lid tightly on the pot. The towel absorbs extra
moisture which otherwise would drip back onto the rice and make it soggy.
- Cook the rice mixture for 10 minutes over medium heat, and then reduce
the heat to allow the rice to steam for another 40 minutes. The heat can
then be turned down very low to keep the rice warm before serving.
- When ready to serve, level the rice and invert the pot over a large
serving dish. The polo (rice mixture) is then served upside down, with a
golden potato/eggplant crust (called "tahdig") on top.
Use brown basmati rice. Replace the potatoes/eggplant with slices of whole
wheat pita bread. Add 1/4 cup of slivered almonds at the end of step 2.
Double the quantities and cook in a large and wide non-stick pot.
Contributed by: Walter Brown, ab684