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This asparagus, saffron and almond pilaf is a lovely spring dish and a great alternative way to use asparagus.
1 onion, finely chopped
3 tbsp coconut oil or butter
300 g basmati rice
large pinch of saffron threads added to 460ml boiling water
1 bunch asparagus
25 g dill, roughly chopped
25 g tarragon, roughly chopped
60 g skinless almonds
- Cook the onion in 2 tbsp coconut oil or butter until it is soft and lightly golden. Add the rice, and stir it in, making sure every grain is coated. Add the saffron water and some salt and pepper, cover with a tight-fitting lid, and cook over a low heat for 15 minutes. (Add a splash of water if the rice sticks to the pan.)
- Meanwhile, trim the woody ends off the asparagus and chop it into 1cm pieces. Cook these in a splash of water, in a covered pan, for 4 minutes or until tender, then rinse it in cold water to stop it cooking. When the rice is ready, add the asparagus, dill and tarragon, and put the lid back on for 5 minutes.
- Heat the remaining oil or butter, and fry the almonds with a pinch of salt until they are brown. Tip them onto the rice.