Traditional Bahraini Muhammar - Sweet Rice Dish

Total Time
Prep 10 mins
Cook 35 mins

This is one of the most famous Bahraini dishes. It is a sweet rice dish which is typically served with fish. I just wanted to add: this recipe calls for 6 cloves, HOWEVER, I think it REALLY ONLY NEEDS 2 cloves!

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Soak together saffron, cardamom, cloves, and rosewater; leave aside to steep.
  2. Add rice to 6 cups of lightly salted boiling water: boil to half cooked - about 8 minutes; drain.
  3. Stir sugar through the hot rice.
  4. Heat the ghee or butter in the same pan the rice was boiled and add the sweetened rice. Sprinkle the rose water mix on top.
  5. Cover the rim of pan with a cloth or paper towels and place lid on tightly.
  6. Cook over very low heat about 20-25 minutes. Transfer to serving platter.
  7. Top with melted butter.


Most Helpful

I cut the sugar in half because I was pretty sure that the 1/2 cup of sugar would have been too sweet for me. I didn't have any cardamom pods, so I used cardamom seeds that I crushed with a mortar and pestle. I took the advice of the poster and only used two cloves. I really enjoyed this. It was subtle, lightly perfumed and different than your typical rice side dish. I used recipe#24431 for the rose water. Thanks for this, it was a lovely change of pace.

tara portee September 21, 2009

Edit: I just relized you dont add salt but I do add about 1 1/2 tsps sea salt when boiling the rice, but I find salts differ greatly so add to taste. We love this without cinnamon and cloves as I dont find the cinnamon adds anything to the dish and I didnt like the taste of cloves and I used 3 cloves to 1 1/2 cups rice. I Usually use part honey or all honey rather than just sugar. This is absolutely delicious with my modifications served with Recipe #372093

UmmBinat May 20, 2009

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