Cook's Hideout: Zafrani Pulao/ Saffron Rice/ Hyderabadi Zafrani Pulao

September 30, 2013

Zafrani Pulao/ Saffron Rice/ Hyderabadi Zafrani Pulao

Blogging Marathon# 32: Letter Z
Theme: A-Z Vegetarian dishes from Andhra Pradesh
Dish: Zafrani Pulao/ Saffron Rice/ Hyderabadi Zafrani Pulao
I can't believe today's the last day for our month long Blogging Marathon. This month flew by so fast and I've enjoyed cooking dishes from my home state of Andhra Pradesh. It has been quite a culinary journey that involved learning new dishes that I've never known or made before (like Vegetarian Haleem or Sheer Qurma) and making some traditional dishes that I've grown up with (like Lauju or kobbari kura or these comforting dals).
A big THANKS to Valli, our gracious host and organizer for the amazing ideas and being the driving force behind all of this action. Thanks to ALL the lovely ladies who did this month long marathon for your constant support. Thanks to ALL my blog readers. Last but not the least huge thanks to my family for all your ideas and encouragement.
Zafrani Pulao/ Saffron Rice/ Hyderabadi Zafrani Pulao
For the final letter Z, I made Hyderabadi Zafrani Pulao. This dish was almost set in stone and never changed throughout the marathon planning. I couldn't think of any other dish with Z and was happy the minute I found this recipe on Vahrehvah site.
Zafrani is nothing but Saffron and this pulao uses a good amount of saffron giving it a beautiful color, fragrance and flavor. Use the best saffron you can find and this dish is sure to be a crowd pleaser. I served the pulao with Shahi Arvi, another rich and delicious Mughlai dish (recipe to follow).
Zafrani Pulao/ Saffron Rice/ Hyderabadi Zafrani Pulao
Recipe adapted from VahrehVah.
Basmati rice - 1½cup
Onion - 1 medium, thinly sliced
Ginger-garlic paste - 1tsp
Saffron - ½tsp
Green chilies - 2, slit
Milk - ½cup
Butter - 1tbsp, cut into pats
Cloves - 3
Green cardamom - 3
Bay leaf - 1
Cinnamon stick - 1"
Shahjeera - 1tsp
Dry fruits - 2-3tbsp (cashews, almonds, raisins)
Salt - to taste
Zafrani Pulao/ Saffron Rice/ Hyderabadi Zafrani Pulao
  • Wash, rinse and soak basmati rice in cold water for at least 30 minutes.
  • Roast the saffron in a small pan for 15-30 seconds. Then using a pestle or a spoon powder saffron. Add warm milk to it and set it aside until ready to use.
  • Heat 1tbsp oil in a large saute pan and roast the nuts and raisins until golden, remove into a small bowl. In the same pan heat 2tbsp oil; add the whole garam masala (cloves through shahjeera from the list) and cook for 30-60 seconds or until it starts to smell fragrant.
  • Add the onions and green chilies and cook until onions turn translucent, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the ginger-garlic paste and cook for another minute.
  • Next add 2cups of water and the nuts, mix well; bring the mixture to a simmer and add the drained rice. Cover and cook on high heat until almost all of the water is absorbed.
  • Now lower the heat and stir in the saffron milk; very gently mix it into the rice. Arrange the pats of butter over the rice. Cover and cook on very low heat for 5-7 minutes.
  • If you feel that the water is not enough to cook the rice, then sprinkle some water on the top and cook covered until done.
Zafrani Pulao/ Saffron Rice/ Hyderabadi Zafrani Pulao
Serve hot with a spicy gravy curry. We had this for lunch along with Shahi Arvi & Kaddu ki Dalcha.
Logo courtesy : Preeti
Previously on A-Z Vegetarian Dishes of Andhra Pradesh:
A for Aava Pettina Aratikaya Kura
B for Bagara Baingan
C for Chimmiri
D for Dosakaya Pachadi
E for Erra Gummadikaya Pulusu
F for Firni
G for Gongura Pulihora
H for Haleem/ Vegetarian Haleem
I for Iguru/ Vankaya-Senagapappu Iguru
J for Jonna Pindi Kudumulu
S for Sheer Qurma
Y for Yakhni Pulao


  1. The Zafrani Pulaoo looks mouthwatering. Love the clicks. Very tempting.

  2. same pinch!!! I also made Zafrani pulao for Z!!! So flavorful and delicious!!


  3. zafrani pulao looks mouthwatering and yummy one :) makes me drool here :) Loved you A-z Array of some interesting and delicious recipe with wonderful presentation and clicks dear :) You rock !!

  4. Omg, wat a beautiful and aromatic pulao, Seriously Pavani i adore your confidence of making Andhra dishes from A-Z, mindblowing job.Love each and every dishes you shared during this BM.

  5. Yet another pulao!! I was expecting you to make something with zafrani and bingo!! Enjoyed your A-Z Andhra Special series, Pavani.

  6. Pavani, I must thank you for taking up this task of recording on our native cuisine..I learnt so many new words and dishes because of this..when you said you wanted to do it, I was thinking if you would be able to get all the letters..but see how beautifully the entire series has come a BIG thanks to your and your efforts for making this such a awesome edition..I will be surely checking this in future for reference...Coming to z, zafrani pulao is surely such a flavoursome rice..and nice that you didn't add too much fruits etc..very lovely choice..

  7. Fantastic!! cook from one state in this alphabetic surely must have been tough, but you have done an awesome lob.We surely had some new this marathon.

  8. One more version of this delicious rice.

  9. That is one delicious rice bowl ! Loved all your dishes from Andhra cuisine !

  10. Pulao look so sinful and tasty

  11. Fabulous choice of Andhra recipes for the series! Enjoyed reading through every one of your recipes :)

  12. This looks fabulous, lovely choice to end with...

  13. saffron makes everything taste better and kudos to you for doing an Andhra A-Z marathon - what an amazingly successful effort

  14. Great recipes in this marathon Pavani...Loved all your dishes will be checking them at leisure later..I already made the pesarattu upma from your space :)

  15. I must say that this sereis was more difficult for you as you had to stick to Andhra dishes. I have thanks to you learnt quite a few new dishes and some of the old ones that i know can be improved. I have really enjoyed this series with you Pavani.
    As for Zafrani pulao this was my choice for Z but I do not know why I thought it was asweet rice and I did not want to venture in sweets.
    I have really enjoyed this series with you Pavani needless to say I am coming back to some of my favourites. :D

  16. That is a delicious bowl of rice!!!!

  17. I couldnt leave ur blog without commenting here!! beautifully Presented and well explained dear :)

  18. Biryani was devised over the Mughal Empire in the 1600's. Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan's King, Mumtaz Mahal over a stop by at the actual Native indian affiliate marketer barracks. Office part-timer


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