Saffron rice is a traditional Friday evening dish among the Jews of Ferrara in Italy. Italian Jews can claim to be the oldest permanently settled community in the Diaspora. There have been Jews in Rome since Roman times; consequently, they have their own special traditions and customs, and are neither Sephardic nor Ashkenazic, though both Ashkenazic and Sephardic Jews have established communities in Italy.
6 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups long-grain rice
3 cups hot chicken or veal broth
1 teaspoon saffron strands
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over high heat. Add the rice and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon to coat each grain, until the rice starts to pop and leap in the pan.
2. Add 2 cups of the broth. Cover the pan and cook for 7 minutes or until the broth has been absorbed.
3. Dissolve the saffron strands in the remaining broth.
4. When the broth has been absorbed, add the saffron-colored broth.
5. Reduce heat and cook, covered, until liquid has been absorbed. Stir well and season to taste.
6. Remove rice from the heat and spread on a serving platter, around a roast or on its own.
7. The rice is normally served warm, but not hot.
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