*  Exported from  MasterCook II  *

                        Saffron Pilaf with Peaches

Recipe By     : Julie Sahni, Classic Indian Cooking
Serving Size  : 4    Preparation Time :0:45
Categories    : Ethnic - Indian

  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
   2      Cups          Basmati Rice
  16      Ounces        Peach Slices,Canned
   6      Tablespoons   Butter
   2      Tablespoons   Almonds,Slivered,Blanched
     1/2  Cup           Onions,Finely Chopped
   1      Stick         Cinnamon
     1/2  Teaspoon      Cardamom,Ground
   1      Teaspoon      Saffron Threads,Powdered
   1 1/2  Teaspoons     Salt
     3/4  Cup           Raisins,Seedless
   1      Cup           Milk

1)  Wash the rice in several changes of cold water.  Put the rice in a bowl, add 3 cups of cold water and let soak for 1/2 hour.  Drain the rice, reserving the water, and set aside.

2)  Drain the syrup from the canned peaches.  Rinse the peaches in cold water, then soak them for 1/2 hour in salted (1/2 teaspoon) water to cover.  Drain them, pat them dry and set aside.

3)  Heat the butter over medium heat in a heavy-bottomed pan.  When butter is hot, add the peach slices and saute them until they are lightly browned on both sides (about 2 to 3 minutes).  Remove them with a slotted spoon and put them in a bowl.

4)  Add the almonds to the same butter and saute them until they are lightly browned (1 to 2 minutes).   Drain them on a paper towel.

5)  Add the onions to the same butter and fry them until they turn pale and limp (about 2 minutes), stirring constantly.  Then add the cinnamon and fry for an additional minute or two.

6)  Add the drained rice and continue frying until the rice is thoroughly coated with butter and begins to brown (about 2 minutes).

7)  Add the cardamom, saffron, salt, raisins, reserved water and milk and bring to the boil, stirring rapidly to keep the rice from settling.

8)  Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, until the rice is filled with steamy holes (about 10 minutes).

9)  Cover the pan tightly, reduce the heat to the lowest point and let the rice steam gently for 10 minutes.  Turn off the heat and let the rice rest undisturbed for an additional 5 minutes.  DO NOT STIR AT ANY TIME DURING THIS 15 MINUTE PERIOD.

10)  Transfer the rice to a heated serving platter.  Surround the rice with the peach slices, sprinkle the almonds on top and serve.

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NOTES : For two people, 1/2 of this recipe is plenty!