Persian Herbed Rice with Roasted Leeks (Sabzi Polo)
2 cups Basmati Rice
1 cup Fresh Dill Chopped (See Note #1)
½ cup Fresh Chives Chopped (See Note #2)
1 cup Fresh Parsley or Cilantro Chopped
⅛ cup Vegetable Oil Plus 4 tablespoons
2-3 leeks , cut into halves or quarters lengthwise
2 stalks spring garlic or onion (optional)
Rinse Basmati rice at least three times. Set aside.
Mix all the chopped herbs in a large bowl and set aside.
Fill a large non stick pot with water, place over high heat, cover with a lid and bring water to boil.
Once the water is boiling, pour the rinsed rice into the water and cook it for 7-8 minutes until the rice grain is soft on the outside but still firm on the inside.
Drain using a colander and mix the herbs with the rice.
Place the pot back on medium heat and make sure it's dry. Pour the vegetable oil into the pot and heat it.
Once the oil is shimmery, place the leeks at the bottom of the pot. (you can also skip this step and simply roast the leeks separately if you prefer)
5.Scoop the rice and herbs back into the pot. Bring most of the rice to the middle, shaping it into a mound. Using the edge of a spatula, make 5 holes in the surface of the rice to let the steam out.
Pour ½ cup of water around the edges. Wrap the lid in a clean towel and put it on the pot. Let the rice steam for 15 minutes, until the steam comes out from the bottom of the pot.
Pour 4 tablespoons vegetable oil on the rice, cover, and steam for 20-30 more minutes on low heat.
Garnish with chopped spring onion. Serve warm with chicken or fish.