Basmati Rice with Crisped Grains

Preparation info
  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in
The Cook's Companion: A step-by-step guide to cooking skills including original recipes

By Josceline Dimbleby

Published 1991

  • About

Basmati rice has a unique elegant, fragrant flavour. This method of cooking is based on the Egyptian way of almost burning the rice on the bottom of the pan and then scraping up the toasted grains to mix them with the rest.


  • 250 g (8 oz) basmati rice, rinsed and soaked in salted water for 1 hour
  • 50 g (


Drain the soaked rice. Melt the butter in a heavy-based saucepan, add the cinnamon sticks and rice and stir. Stir in the water and salt, then bring to the boil. Cover the saucepan tightly, reduce the heat to as low as possible and cook for 10–14 minutes until the rice has absorbed the liquid and is tender but still has a slight bite to it. Put a tea towel between the lid and the top of the rice