Persian Lentil Rice - Addes Pilaf

Total Time
1hr 20mins
Prep 40 mins
Cook 40 mins

I had this one day, at a Persian restaurant in Kuala Lumpur. It was so good with some okra stew or oxtail stew that I had to try it myself. Serving is for two people, because that's how many people live at home.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Soak rice in water for 3-4 hours, then cook in salted water for 10-15 minutes using a non-stick pot until it just softens.
  2. Drain water and empty the pot.
  3. Bring 2-3 cups of water to boil.
  4. Wash lentil and add to water with a bit of salt.
  5. Cook over medium heat for about 15-20 minutes until tender.
  6. Peel and thinly slice onions.
  7. Fry in oil until slightly golden.
  8. Add ground beef or lamb, salt and black pepper, and fry over medium heat for about 10 minutes.
  9. Add one cup of hot water and cook until water has been mostly absorbed.
  10. Wash raisins and dates.
  11. Pour 1/2 cup of water and some oil in the non-stick pot.
  12. Pour in half of the rice.
  13. Follow with meat, lentil, and raisins.
  14. Add in remainder of rice.
  15. Cook over low heat for about 20 minutes.
  16. Dissolve saffron in 1/3 cup of hot water and pour over the rice.
  17. Mix well before serving.


Most Helpful

4 1/2 stars. Not as flavourful as we are used to but DH liked this for a different ground meat & rice dish. I did not use the regular red split lentils as I just felt that is not what this dish meant and after searching the net about red lentils in Iranian Pilaf I used brown lentils instead but had to cook them much longer. I used white Basmati rice and ground beef, yellow raisins because I didn't have Iranian sultanas on hand, I did use al noor dates from Tunisia (the dates are not listed in the ingredients just in the instructions!) Saffron from Spain as I don't think Iranian saffron would call for so much and next time I would use less water to soak them as it seemed a bit much to pour over the final dish. For the cooking oil I used extra virgin olive oil and sea salt for the salt. I served it with a Balkan (thick) plain yogurt. I might make this again.

UmmBinat May 19, 2010

This was a lovely meal. I increased it to 3 large onions. I think this might hold up better with brown lentils as opposed to red lentils, but the brown lentils would need to cook longer. I just think they would hold their shape and be less mushy. But overall, the flavor was simple, but wonderful.

ambreen.tour October 29, 2008

OMG this was delicious I love the combination of fruit, meat & saffron. I made eggplant stew to go with it and added some cucumber & yoghurt salad - heavenly

Sri S. August 27, 2008

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a