Special Feature

Arroz de Sabato
(Sabbath Rice Pilav with Saffron)


Drying Time (Rice): 20 Minutes
Preparation Time: 1 Hour
Yield: 4 Cups Cooked Rice


To make Arroz de Sabato:

Follow the directions below for Plain Rice Pilav, adding 1 bay leaf and 1/4 teaspoon saffron threads dissolved in 1/4 cup boiling water to the rice together with the stock. Cook as directed. The rice gets a beautiful yellow color and a heady aroma from the saffron and bay leaf. The bay leaf will be resting on top of the rice at the end of cooking. Remove and discard it before serving. Serve as a side dish with a meat, fish, or vegetarian entree.


Plain Rice Pilav

Servings: 6—8

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

2. If using white rice, you will need 4 cups stock. If using brown rice you will use 5 cups stock.

3. If using white rice, place the rice in a colander and rinse it in the sink in cold water until the water runs clear. Allow the rice to drain and dry for 20 minutes. If using brown rice, skip this step.

4. Over medium heat, heat the olive oil in a casserole with a tight fitting lid. Sauté the rice in the oil until it starts to brown.

5. Sprinkle the salt over the rice and pour in the stock. Cover tightly and place in the oven. Bake for 35-40 minutes (white rice) to 1 hour (brown rice). When the pilaf is done, all of the liquid will have been absorbed. A lovely aroma will fill the room when you open the lid of the pot. Serve immediately as a side dish with a meat, fish or vegetarian entree.


The Sephardic Kitchen
by Rabbi Robert Sternberg
HarperCollins Publishers, 1996
Reprinted by permission.

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This page originally published as part of the electronic Gourmet Guide between 1994 and 1998.

Modified February 2007