This sweet and nutty rice dish would make a perfect accompaniment to any Indian-style curry, and it's really worth the small extra effort to jazz up steamed rice. Search the website for curry recipes - then top it all off with a dollop of mango chutney.






Skill level

Average: 3.3 (24 votes)


  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 6 tbsp peanut oil
  • 1 red onion, halved, finely sliced
  • 1 cup mixed nuts and dried fruit (a mix of peanuts, cashews, walnuts and sultanas)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • ½ tsp saffron powder
  • 500 ml (2 cups) warm water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 bay leaves

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Soaking time 30 minutes

Wash the rice and leave soaking in a saucepan of water for 30 minutes.

Heat the oil in a wide, heavy-based pan or wok. Add the onion and fry until reddish brown. Remove from pan, leaving the residual oil behind.

Add the nuts, dried fruit and cinnamon to the pan, and gently fry. Drain the rice and add to pan, stirring well.

Add the saffron to the warm water and stir to dissolve. Return the cooked onion to the pan, pour the saffron water over the top and add the salt and bay leaves.

Cover the rice with a lid and simmer gently for about 10 minutes or until water is absorbed and the rice is cooked.

Turn off the stove and remove lid when done. Cover the rice with a clean tea towel. Replace the lid and set aside until ready to eat. (The tea towel absorbs any moisture that may collect under the lid.)

Serve with Gilbert's Prawn and coconut curry.