Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Do Not Soak This Pan!

....or you'll be throwing away the good stuff.

This is called tahdig, and it's about the most fun you'll have eating rice--sort of a rice crispy treat for grown-ups. In its purest form, tahdig is simply what is scraped out of the bottom of the rice pot. After you've dumped the cooked rice into a bowl, take a flexible spatula and work around the edges of what's stuck to the bottom of the pot, flip it over, sprinkle it with a little salt or any seasoning that makes you happy, and you have a great snack.
 The flipside: crusty and crunchy and fun to eat.

Tahdig traditionally was reserved for guests in Iranian households. But it's so popular now that it's on the menu in many Persian restaurants as a regular feature, meaning there must be some way to make it in quantity, right? Appliance manufacturers picked up on tahdig's popularity and began producing rice cookers especially for making tahdig.
Tahdig: recooked with butter

While I've found dozens of recipes for making it--the Internet is loaded with them--I cheated and made some by melting butter in a skillet, pressing some cooked rice into the bottom and letting it recook on low heat until the moisture was evaporated and the rice browned. Then I sprinkled it with a little southwestern seasoning and munched out.

We should probably keep this between us, you know? If the snack food giants discover how satisfying this stuff is, they're sure to waste tons of rice in the process of making a sad facsimile that is loaded with salt and devoid of character. But if you happen to have a particularly great method for making it, will you please share it with the rest of us? Thanks!

1 comment:

Susan Lutz said...

This looks amazing. I'm going to go cook some rice now...