Preparation / Directions:
(Rice Pilau With Carrot And Red Kidney Beans)
There are variations of variations in the artful combinations of Persian rice. Here is one that, with very few ingredients, manages to encompass a wide range of seasonings and flavors.
1. Cover the beans with water and soak them overnight. Drain. Cover the beans with water again and cook, covered, over moderate heat until they are soft but still whole, about 1/2 hour. Drain and set aside.
2. Put the carrots, sugar, 1 tablespoon of the oil, and 1/4 cup of the water into a pan and cook over low heat for 5 minutes, or until the liquid evaporates. Be careful not to burn the carrots. Set aside.
3. Bring the remaining 4 cups of water to a boil in a pan. Drain nearly all the water from the rice and add the rice to the boiling water. Cover the pan and cook over moderate heat for 10 minutes. Drain, run the rice under cold water, and drain again.
4. Put 2 tablespoons of the remaining oil in a pan large enough to spread out the potato slices flat on its bottom. Sprinkle over this the 1 tablespoon of water. All the other ingredients are to be added in layers as follows: Add 1/2 cup of the rice over the potatoes. Cover this with the carrots and a few sprinkling of the cinnamon. Cover with the beans. Continue in this manner, one layer after another, ending with beans. Sprinkle cinnamon lightly over each layer. Shape the top layer into a pyramid.
5. Cover the pan and cook over low heat for 10 minutes. Sprinkle the balance of the oil (2 tablespoons) over the top and cover the pan with paper kitchen towels and the pan cover. Continue to cook over low heat for 15 minutes more. The rice, carrots, and beans will be cooked through and the potato and oil will develop their own crisp crust on the bottom.
Serve warm. Serve 4 to 6 with other dishes.