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Saffron pilaf

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for saffron pilaf from Damien Pignolet.

By Damien Pignolet
  • 10 mins preparation
  • 35 mins cooking
  • Serves 2
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Saffron pilaf


  • ¼ tsp saffron threads
  • 20 gm unsalted butter, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tbsp finely diced onion
  • 100 gm basmati rice, rinsed (½ cup)
  • 1 tbsp dry white wine or vermouth, such as Noilly Prat
  • 250 ml chicken or fish stock, warmed (1 cup)
  • 1 small fresh bay leaf


  • 1
    Preheat oven to 100C. Toast saffron on a small oven tray until fragrant (5 minutes). Increase oven to 140C. Melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat, add onion and sauté until tender (3-4 minutes).
  • 2
    Add rice and saffron, stir to toast and warm through (1-2 minutes), then add wine or vermouth and let it bubble. Add stock, season to taste, bring to the boil, add bay leaf, cover and transfer to oven. Bake until rice is tender and stock is absorbed (20 minutes), stand for 5 minutes and serve hot with lobster à l'Américaine.