Shabe Yalda (شب یلدا‎), the winter solstice, is on Wednesday and is a festival celebrated by Persian families on the longest night of the year to welcome light after dark. Pomegranate is symbolic to Yalda, representing  fertility, light and goodness. Here, we give you our veggie version of Anar Polo.

• Basmati Rice
• Pomegranate seeds
• Raisins
• Pistachio slivers or kernels
• Saffron

To make:
1) Wash rice several times under cold water to remove starch
2) Bring to boil salted water and add the washed rice - turn the heat down to medium and simmer
3) Once the rice is al dente strain to remove water and then wash rice with cold water, strain again
4) I have mixed some saffron into the rice carefully to ensure its golden throughout however this isn't essential
5) Pop a nonstick pan on medium heat and add some vegetable oil to the pan
6) Layer the rice in the pan with pomegranate seeds and raisins (traditionally you can also add shredded chicken here also)
7) Add salt and pepper to season
8) Wrap the pan lid in a clean cloth / towel
9) Allow the rice to cook on medium heat until steam starts to show and then turn down to low heat for around 30 minutes or until cooked
10) Flip out tahdig and top with further pomegranate seeds, raisins and pistachios

View video guide on Instagram here:


December 19, 2022
Tags: Mains Rice