Spiced Somali Rice is unlike any dish you’ve ever had! Picture some basmati rice cooked in stock along with sauteed onions and tomatoes and a special spice mix made with cumin, coriander garlic, cardamom, cinnamon, and black pepper. It’s topped with fried onions and soft raisins. If you’re looking for a new recipe to spice up your meals, this is it!
SPICED SOMALI RICE
Spiced Somali Rice anyone? Ever tried it?
It’s like one of my favorite dishes. It’s SO unique! It’s basically basmati rice cooked in stock and spices and topped with fried onions and raisins (YES, raisins!!).
Not gonna lie, I’m kinda frustrated at my description of this dish because it really doesn’t do it justice but I’ve tried googling to see how other people had described it and uhm… none of the descriptions I read were doing this dish any justice.
So… that’s a great excuse to give it a try, right? 🙂
Anyway. Somali Rice is perfect as a main or side, depending on the occasion! If you’re looking for a new recipe to spice up your meals, THIS is exactly what you’re looking for. It’s not popular but it’s usually VERY appreciated so I’d give it a go, you’re in for a LOT of compliments and “What is this again?! How did you make it??”.
Oh, and want to know a fun thing about this rice? It has powdered food coloring in it. YUP! I know, it sounds so random and borderline inappropriate but it’s not Somali rice without food coloring! (You can also use gel, I’ll provide all substitutions below!).
WHAT EXACTLY IS SPICED SOMALI RICE?
Somali rice aka Bariis Iskukaris (or Bariis) is Somalia’s national dish. It’s basically basmati rice cooked in stock and spices and topped with fried onions and raisins. Some people like to add extra vegetables to it (usually red bell peppers or potatoes) or cilantro.
The spice mix used in this recipe can be easily made at home and is usually referred to as “xawaash”. It contains cumin, cinnamon, black pepper, cardamom, cloves, coriander, and nutmeg.
It’s usually served with roasted lamb or goat and fresh bananas!
HOW DO YOU MAKE SOMALI RICE?
- Prepare the basmati rice by soaking it and cooking it until almost done.
- Fry part of the onions until golden brown and fragrant.
- Prepare the base of the rice by sauteeing extra onions, tomatoes, and spices. Add some chicken stock to your base (use vegetarian stock if vegetarian).
- Add the rice and top with softened raisins, fried onions, and food coloring.
HAPPY COOKING BABES!! I hope you’ll love Spiced Somali Rice as much as I do!!
Please leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating if you make it! I LOVE hearing from you! 💘
OH! YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE MY:
- Spicy Lebanese Potatoes
- Oh So Easy Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
- Baked Feta Cheese with Tomatoes
- Baked Cajun Popcorn Chicken with Chipotle Mayo
Spiced Somali Rice or Bariis Iskukaris
- 1 cup basmati rice soaked in water for an hour and drained
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 medium yellow onion thinly sliced
- 1 medium onion diced
- 1 medium tomato diced
- 1/2 tbsp ground coriander
- 1 cube chicken or vegetable stock
- 1/4 tsp ground cardamom or 4-5 cardamom pods
- 1 stick cinnamon
- 3 cloves garlic crushed
- 1 tbsp ground cumin
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 3 tbsp water
- salt to taste
- 1/4 tsp powdered food coloring (orange) or 2-3 drops gel food coloring mixed with 1 tsp water
- 1/4 cup raisins softened
- Cook the basmati rice in salted water until half cooked (some of the rice should be translucent and some should be white). I usually cook mine for 7-8 minutes. Drain and set aside.
- In a medium pan over medium-high heat, add the vegetable oil. Once the oil is hot (around 350F - 375F), add the sliced onion and fry until golden brown and fragrant, then remove from the oil and place onto a plate lined with paper towels to drain. Do not discard the oil!
- In the same pan over medium heat, add the diced onion to the oil and saute for a minute. Add in the chicken or vegetable stock cube, and the tomato and saute for another minute. Then add in the cardamom and cinnamon. Saute for another minute. Add in the garlic, cumin, and pepper. Saute until the onions are soft and translucent. Stir continuously to keep the mixture from burning.
- Add in the water and stir. Top the mixture with the basmati rice. Do NOT mix! Simply place the rice on top of the mixture and make sure the oil mixture is entirely covered. Reduce heat to the lowest setting. Top the rice with the softened raisins and the fried onions. Dot the rice with the orange food coloring. Do not mix. Wrap the lid of your pan with a clean kitchen towel, then place it on the pan.
- Steam for 8-10 minutes, the rice should release a cloud of steam when removing the lid. Turn off the heat and allow it to rest covered for 5 minutes. Remove the lid and gently mix until the onions, raisins, and food coloring are combined into the rice. Serve! If you used cardamom pods, you should remove them before serving.