Tahchin – Persian Saffron Rice with Chicken

Prep Time: 40 min Cook Time: 1 hour Total Time: 1 hr 40 mins

Persian Saffron Rice with Chicken, known as Tahdig, has layers of rice and chicken coated with saffron and yogurt. It is topped with a layer of tahdig and some fried nuts.

  • 500 grams boneless chicken thighs (cut into 3-4 cm cubes)
  • 4 medieum onions (finely chopped)
  • 5 large eggs (3 medieum eggs for half the ingredients)
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 1/4 cup oil (or olive oil)
  • 500 grams full-fat yogurt
  • 4 cups Basmati rice
  • 8 bay leaves
  • 12 cardamom pods
  • 2 teaspoons pepper
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup brewed saffron
  • 12 cloves garlic (crushed)
  • To garnish
  • 75 grams butter
  • 1 cup barberries
  • 1 1/2 cup sultanas
  • 1/3 cup almond flakes
  • 1/3 cup pistachio flakes
    To prepare the chicken
  1. Drizzle 1/4 cup of oil into the pot. Fry the onions for a few minutes till they become translucent. Add the crushed garlic and sauté very well.

  2. Then, add the chicken cubes, bay leaves, cardamom pods, a teaspoon of salt, and a teaspoon of pepper. Once the chicken cubes are lightly fried, add 3 tablespoons of brewed saffron to give the chicken a nice golden look. Set the chicken aside.

  3. To prepare the rice
  4. Wash the rice several times until the water runs out clear. In your Perfect Pot, keep water boiling for 2-3 minutes, then add the drained basmati rice. Salt the water and parboil the rice for 5 minutes until the rice extends its size.

  5. Hold a grain between your nail and your finger. It should be soft in the outside with a hard texture on the inside. Drain the rice a set aside.

  6. To prepare the yogurt mix
  7. In a big bowl, put the yogurt, eggs, oil, lemon juice, 4-5 tablespoons of brewed saffron, and mix. Add 2 teaspoons of salt and a teaspoon of pepper.

  8. Now, add two ladles of yogurt mixture to the chicken in the pot and mixed till coated, and add the drained rice to the rest of the yogurt mixture. Mix it gently so the rice grains do not break.

  9. To prepare the pot and cook
  10. In a cool pot, take two ladles of rice and yogurt mixture and flatten them at the bottom of the pot. You want a layer that is 2-3 cm deep.

  11. Set a layer of chicken mixture, another layer of rice, a second layer of chicken, and a final flat layer of rice.

  12. Start with the pot on medium to high heat for 5 mins. Turn it down to low heat for one hour to cook fully over the steam.

  13. For the crown
  14. Soak barberries and sultanas in lukewarm water for 15-20 mins and drain them ahead of time. In Always Pan or any pan you have, melt the butter.

  15. Fry sultanas first on medium heat for around 3 mins. Add the barberries for another 3 mins. Finally, add the almonds and pistachios. Fry them all together for 2 minutes. Once they are gold and crispy, they are ready.

  16. To finalize your dish
  17. Once the rice is cooked, flip the pot upside down in the serving tray or dish. It comes out like a cake with a top layer of tahdig.

  18. Garnish with the fried nuts. Serve and enjoy your grand dish!

Content Creator

I'm Nelly, the recipes I share here are inspired by the people, cultures and places beloved to me. Peanutswirls represents my love for food, cooking and hosting. I hope to share with you a taste of the Middle East influnced by my upbringing in the West.

I can't wait to see what we cook together.