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Sabzi Polo with Tuna

Tuna Rice Bowl

This Persian-style tuna rice bowl is perfect for those hectic and busy days where you don’t have the time or the energy to cook, but want to prepare a healthy and home-cooked meal for your family. Not only are these tuna rice bowls super easy and quick to make, they are delicious and require minimal preparation!

What I like about this dish is that you can store the main ingredients in your pantry for months, if not years, for when you need them. The photos above show the brands I used but use any brand you have on hand or prefer. I used Sadaf sabzi polo dehydrated herbs because it contains fenugreek which is an essential herb in this rice. As for rice, I prefer a flavorful and fragrant basmati rice but Sela was all I had on hand. Some brands of rice produce extra long and slender-grained rice when cooked which is great, but have no aroma or flavor whatsoever and Sela falls into this category for me. For me taste is more important than looks. When it comes to tuna, I always buy the ones in oil and for this recipe I used Chicken of The Sea solid white albacore tuna in oil because it’s chunkier and much tastier than the ones in water.

My recipe is for two servings and the Sadaf sabzi polo comes in a 2 oz. can which is enough for up to 6 servings. You will need 1/3 of the can for this recipe and can store the rest for future use. If you’re cooking a larger batch just follow the recipe on the back of the can. The reason I used dry herbs was to save time and the energy it takes to clean, wash and chop all the herbs for this rice. But if you prefer to use fresh herbs, use my recipes for sabzi polo prepared by straining the rice, sabzi polo prepared by steaming the rice, or sabzi polo prepared in a rice cooker, whichever method you prefer.


Before cooking the rice, you need to re-hydrate the herbs by soaking them in warm water for at least 10 minutes and then straining them in a mesh strainer. The easiest way is to fill a bowl with warm water and add the herbs to a mesh strainer and set it over the bowl making sure all the herbs are submerged in the warm water. You may need to stir it a few times. After 10 minutes just lift the strainer off the bowl and discard the water. While the herbs are soaking, place your rice in a mesh strainer and rinse it under cold running water for few minutes. Once you’re done with your rice, peel and chop your garlic. 

Place all the ingredients, except saffron and tuna, into the bowl of a small rice cooker. Cover and turn it on following the manufacturer’s timing. Half way through cooking, gently stir the ingredients to combine them.

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When rice is ready, unplug the rice cooker. Dissolve saffron in 1 tablespoon hot water and pour over the rice. I didn’t take a picture of this step.

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To serve scoop rice into a bowl and top with tuna. 

Sabzi polo with Tuna

If you have a Persian rice cooker that makes crispy rice crust on the bottom and you have time to spare, use it for this rice. In order to save time, I used a regular rice cooker that took 30 minutes to cook the rice, therefore no crust was formed on the bottom of the pot. 

 

Persian-Style Tuna Rice Bowl

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 40 min
Ready in: 40 min
Yields: 2 servings

INGREDIENTS

½ cup plus 2 tablespoons Sadaf sabzi polo (dehydrated herbs)
1 cup long grain basmati rice
1 garlic clove peeled and finely chopped
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1¾ cups cold water
Pinch of ground saffron (optional)
1 (5 oz) can Chicken of the Sea solid white albacore tuna in oil drained

 INSTRUCTIONS

Add the dry herbs to a sieve and set the sieve over a bowl of warm water, deep enough for the herbs to completely submerge. You may need to stir them a few times. Allow the dry herbs to re-hydrate for at least 10 minutes.

While the herbs are re-hydrating, place the rice in a mesh strainer or sieve and rinse under cold running water for few minutes or until the water runs clear.

Peel and finely chop the garlic clove.

Place all the ingredients, except saffron and tuna, into the bowl of a small rice cooker. Cover and turn it on following the manufacturer’s timing. Half way through cooking, gently stir the ingredients to combine them.

When rice is ready, unplug the rice cooker. Dissolve saffron in 1 tablespoon hot water and pour over the rice.

To serve scoop rice into a bowl and top with tuna.