Prevention's Chelou (Rice Cake)
Recipe By: “Middle Eastern Light” September 1996
1 medium sweet potato -- thinly sliced
2 cups basmati rice -- dry measure
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon saffron threads -- gently toasted
2 tablespoons V-8 juice
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Rinse potato slices to remove starch and ensure crunchiness. Drain.
3. Soak rice for 30 min., drain. Boil for 6 min. and drain again.
4. Heat oil in a shallow, ovenproof, no-stick saucepan over medium heat. Carefully spread potato slices, overlapping, to cover bottom of pan. Begin to saute.
5. Pile rice on top of potatoes. Add saffron to V-8 juice and drizzle over rice. When potatoes begin to sizzle, cover pan tightly and place on bottom rack of oven for 40 min. Potatoes should be crunchy.
6. Remove pan from oven; loosen rice on sides with a stiff-spatula and invert chelou onto a serving plate with potato crust on top. Serve Immediately. Serves
NOTES : Shelou is a Persian rice dish that is baked. A crunchy brown crust forms on the bottom. Prevention's version has a thin layer of sliced sweet potatoes to form the crust, which becomes an attractive top crust, when inverted onto a platter. The ingredient list is short. See recipe called “Rice with Potatoes, Cilantro and Mint” for a Jamshedpur version.