Saffron Rice with Golden Raisins and Pine Nuts – An Edible Mosaic Party!

Cuz ya gotta have Faith-a, Faith-a, Faith-ah!

Do you know Faith Gorsky? The cutie patootie behind An Edible Mosaic? Of course you do. It’s all that cuteness I tell you.

Weeeeeell, today is one for the books for her (hardy HAAARRRRR, oh.) BECAUSE, look at the next photo.

That’s her brand spickity spankin’ new cookbook! And its official release date is today. Eeeee!

And no, SHE is not the edible mosaic, you guys. Although I’m sure her husband would disagree YA KNOW WHAT I’M SAYIN’.

So basically, Faith got hitched and moved to the Middle East with her hubby beau for a few months and fell in love with all that cool culture and cuisine. And THEN learned all the culinary tricks of the trade from her in-laws over there. And THEN brought it back here to show us! Makes me about 700 shades of green just imagining it. All those spices, all that color, all those pine nuts! I can’t wait for our next trip when she takes me and doesn’t know it and then finds me like a creepster in her vanity bag foaming at the mouth.

So today, to celebrate her book’s release, she’s hosting an enormous virtual party with 247 billion other bloggers! Now that’s a lot of pine nuts.

We all made her saffron rice with golden raisins and pine nuts and can I just say that I wish I could have run around the room with a scent net, trapping all those slap-ya-mama smells, melting them down in some cool cauldron type thing, bottling the magic potion, and then pouring it into my nose holes every hour for the rest of my life? Can I just say that?

Okay so here are a couple of eempartant details fer ya, which I did not write so don’t throw me in jail:

·       An Edible Mosaic:  Middle Eastern Fare with Extraordinary Flair by Faith Gorsky

·       The book has over 100 Middle Eastern recipes, with a focus mainly on dishes from the Levant, but also a few recipes from other areas of the Middle East.

·       The book is available to order on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. (For your reference, the links are:  Amazon ( and Barnes & Noble (

GO GET IT ALREADY. <—– I wrote that part though.

I wanna be mosaic. Ugh.

Saffron Rice with Golden Raisins and Pine Nuts – (This is straight from the book! I wrote nothing. Don’t throw me in jail again.)

Recipe courtesy of An Edible Mosaic:  Middle Eastern Fare with Extraordinary Flair by Faith Gorsky (Tuttle Publishing; Nov. 2012); reprinted with permission.

Serves 4 to 6
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes, plus 15 minutes to let the rice sit after cooking

1½ cups (325 g) basmati rice, rinsed
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons pine nuts
1 onion, finely diced
4 tablespoons sultanas (golden raisins)
1¾ cups (425 ml) boiling water
¾ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon saffron threads (or ½ teaspoon turmeric)

•    Soak the rice in tepid water for 10 minutes; drain. While the rice is soaking, put half a kettle of water on to boil.
•    Add the oil to a medium, thick-bottomed lidded saucepan over medium heat. Add the pine nuts and cook until golden brown, about 1 to 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Transfer the pine nuts to a small bowl and set aside.
•    Add the onion to the saucepan you cooked the pine nuts in, and cook until softened and just starting to brown, about 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the rice and cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in the sultanas, boiling water, salt, and saffron (or turmeric), turn the heat up to high, and bring it to a rolling boil.
•    Give the rice a stir, then cover the saucepan, turn the heat down to very low, and cook until tender, about 10 minutes (do not open the lid during this time). Turn the heat off and let the rice sit (covered) 15 minutes, then fluff with a fork.
•    Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle the toasted pine nuts on top; serve.

OPTIONAL Add two pods of cardamom, two whole cloves, and one 2-inch (5 cm) piece of cinnamon stick at the same time that you add the rice.

Mixed White and Yellow Rice

Serves 4 to 6
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes, plus 15 minutes to let the rice sit after cooking

1½ cups (325 g) uncooked basmati rice, rinsed
2 tablespoons oil
1 onion, finely diced
1 bay leaf
2 whole cloves
2 pods cardamom, cracked open
2 whole peppercorns
¾ teaspoon salt
1¾ cups (425 ml) boiling water
1-2 pinches saffron threads or ½ teaspoon turmeric dissolved in 1 tablespoon hot water

•    Soak the rice in tepid water for 10 minutes; drain. While the rice is soaking, put half a kettle of water on to boil.
•    Add the oil to a medium, thick-bottomed lidded saucepan, cover and place over moderately high heat. Once hot, add the onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
•    Add the rice, bay leaf, cloves, cardamom pods, peppercorns, and salt, and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the boiling water to the rice, turn heat up to high, and bring it to a rolling boil. Give it a stir, cover the pot, turn heat down to very low, and cook 10 minutes (don’t open the lid during this time).
•    After the rice is cooked, let the pot sit with the lid on for 15 minutes, then fluff the rice with a fork. Transfer 1/3 of the rice to a separate bowl.
•    Stir the saffron or turmeric-colored water into 1/3 of the rice (the rice will turn yellow). Mix together the yellow rice and white rice; serve.

Congratulations, Faith! I swear I won’t make too much of a mess in your vanity bag and WHY am I calling it vanity bag.

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31 Responses to Saffron Rice with Golden Raisins and Pine Nuts – An Edible Mosaic Party!

  1. Elizabeth@ Food Ramblings November 9, 2012 at 7:37 am #
    Warm Vanilla Sugar made this recipe too! Both look delicious and I love that the recipes look different just by two different people following the recipe!
  2. Cindy Brickley November 9, 2012 at 7:42 am #
    I bought Faith's book and I love this Rice Dish. It will be part of my Thanksgiving dinner. Thanks for posting.
  3. Ashley November 9, 2012 at 7:46 am #
  4. Brian @ A Thought For Food November 9, 2012 at 7:49 am #
    Looks amazing, Bev! Funny that Sommer made it as well (Both look gorgeous, though ;-))!
  5. Sommer@ASpicyPerspective November 9, 2012 at 8:09 am #
    That's right, there's plenty of Saffron Rice to go around... Gorgeous Bev!!
  6. Jen @ Savory Simple November 9, 2012 at 8:11 am #
    What a fabulous recipe!
  7. Amy @ The Nifty Foodie November 9, 2012 at 8:12 am #
    Wow, this dish looks and sounds fantastic!
  8. Jenna November 9, 2012 at 8:22 am #
    This rice looks so good. Faith is so sweet and talented.
  9. Phoebe November 9, 2012 at 8:35 am #
    This looks delicious - I can't wait to try it!
  10. Laurie {Simply Scratch} November 9, 2012 at 9:06 am #
  11. claire @ the realistic nutritionist November 9, 2012 at 9:29 am #
    this is so pretty. i like want to live in that bowl.
  12. Shaina November 9, 2012 at 9:47 am #
    Gorgeous. I need to get my hands on this book.
  13. Faith November 9, 2012 at 10:40 am #
    You are fabulous and I'm LMAO. You can hide in my vanity bag anytime. ;) P.S. Love the G.M. reference!
    • Bev Weidner November 9, 2012 at 11:11 am #
      Hahahaha, so glad you got my GM reference! <3
  14. Julia {The Roasted Root} November 9, 2012 at 10:44 am #
    I love the way this recipe turned out and I'm happy to see you took part in Faith's cookbook release party! Good call adding the cinnamon stick - next time I make this recipe, I'm going to try the optional add-ins, too! YUM!
  15. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar November 9, 2012 at 10:45 am #
    This stuff is sooo awesome. I adored making it!
  16. Abby@ The Frosted Vegan November 9, 2012 at 11:41 am #
    Yum! For some reason i can't always find saffron or know what to do with it, but this is looking perfect!
  17. Lori Lynn November 9, 2012 at 12:10 pm #
    Hi Bev - it's nice to meet you through Faith's book launch. This is so much fun. We are wishing her super-success, and if the saffron rice recipe is any indication, the book will be a big hit! Love your photos (and sense of humor too). LL
  18. Vita @ Juicer Depot November 9, 2012 at 1:52 pm #
    Looks totally delicious! I will have to check out her book.
  19. DessertForTwo November 9, 2012 at 2:01 pm #
    Oh, Bev. Oh my Bev. Now I'm singing that song all day. 'cuz ya gotta have faith-ah.' thanks. I mean no thanks for thanks. Thanks for being hilarious and sweet though!
  20. Kim - Liv Life November 9, 2012 at 2:42 pm #
    Loving the golden hue of the rice!! Definitely a keeper for the family dinner!
  21. Katie November 9, 2012 at 2:47 pm #
    That looks like a nap. So comforting and perfect.
  22. Urban Wife November 9, 2012 at 5:49 pm #
    Saffron rice is the bomb dot com. So is Faith's new, awesome cookbook.
  23. Alison November 10, 2012 at 5:17 am #
    Hi Bev, came by from Faith's, and looksy, your rice looks beautiful! Now to poke around YOUR recipes. :)
  24. Kari@Loaves n Dishes November 10, 2012 at 12:21 pm #
    Saffron is sooo pretty. I actually don't know Faith, but am heading there right now to check her out!
  25. Heidi @ Food Doodles November 10, 2012 at 12:48 pm #
    Oooh, your rice looks awesome! :D
  26. Rachael {SimplyFreshCooking} November 10, 2012 at 5:17 pm #
    Been hearing a lot about this cookbook lately and I WANT IT!! Every time I see saffron at Whole Foods I'm like, should I buy it?? Then I stand in front of it for 10 minutes and ultimately end up NOT buying because I don't have a plan for it. This sounds like a plan to me!! Yummy. :)
  27. Home Inspections Chicago November 10, 2012 at 8:10 pm #
    This looks beautiful!!
  28. Jean | Lemons & Anchovies November 11, 2012 at 1:35 pm #
    Such pretty pictures of Faith's saffron rice dish. I've been enjoying seeing everyone's take on it but gosh, your post made me smile. Love it! Nice to be a part of her virtual launch party with you. :)
  29. Stephanie April 26, 2013 at 7:07 pm #
    Question: How much water is in a kettle? The directions say to put on half a kettle, but I have no idea what that means. I've tried googling it, and I can't find anything. What does that come out to in cups? Thanks!
    • Bev Weidner April 27, 2013 at 7:55 am #
      Such a good question! That wording was straight from her cookbook and I wish it had been more specific too. I think I put about 3 cups of water in. I hope that helps!

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