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The Sababa Jeweled Rice

The one to make! Because of its sweet, savory, and herby elements, this rice seems to go with everything. Caramelized onions put it over the top. Basmati and jasmine rice both work well here, and though the barberries have a nice tartness, you can swap in whatever dried fruit you have around (same goes for the pistachios; use any nut you like). Bonus points if you’re a dill lover like me, but again…make it your own.


6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 jumbo onion, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1½ cups basmati or jasmine rice

½ cup finely chopped dill, plus more for garnish

⅓ cup barberries or chopped dried cranberries

⅓ cup toasted pistachios, coarsely chopped

¼ cup toasted sliced almonds

Zest of 1 lemon

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


In a large skillet, heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring frequently at first to prevent the onions from burning, until the onions begin to soften, 5 minutes.


Reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring often, until the onions begin to turn light golden, another 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low, add ¼ teaspoon of the salt to the onions and cook, stirring, until the onions are caramelized and deep golden, another 15 to 20 minutes.


In a colander, rinse the rice until the water runs clear. In a large saucepan, bring the rice and 2¼ cups water to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer until the rice has absorbed all the water and is fluffy, 16 to 17 minutes.


Uncover the rice and stir in the caramelized onions, dill, barberries, pistachios, almonds, and lemon zest with the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil, ¾ teaspoon salt, and the pepper. 

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