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Omid Roustaei, The Caspian Chef
Crispy saffron rice cake
5 from 28 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
soaking time 1 hour
Course Main Course
Cuisine Iranian, Persian
Servings 4


  • 2 cups white basmati rice, soaked and rinsed
  • 8 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons salt, for parboiling the rice and will be rinsed out
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground saffron, dissolved in 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 2 eggs
  • 6 tablespoons oil divided


  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup barberries, soaked for 5 mins and rinsed
  • 1-2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground saffron, in 2 tablespoons water


  • 2 tablespoons slivered pistachios


  • Wash the rice thoroughly and set aside to soak for at least one hour.
  • In a large covered pot, bring 8 cups water and the salt to a boil. Add the rinsed rice and boil on high heat uncovered for about 6-8 minutes, or until the rice has slightly softened.
  • Drain the rice in a colander, rinse with lukewarm water, and set aside while you prepare the yogurt and egg mixture.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the saffron, yogurt, eggs and 5 tablespoons of oil and mix thoroughly.
  • Gently fold in the parboiled rice and mix until all the of the rice is mixed with the golden yogurt and egg mixture.
  • Place the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil in a non-stick pot and add the rice mixture to the pan.
  • Wrap the lid with a clean towel and place on top of the pot. This will allow the rice to steam.
  • Allow the rice to steam over a medium-low to medium heat for 45 minutes.
  • While the rice is cooking, prepare the barberries by gently melting the butter and then adding the barberries, sugar and saffron water. Stir over low heat for about 2-4 minutes until the barberries have turned bright and glistening. Take care to not burn the berries. Set aside.
  • After 45 minutes, remove the rice pot from the heat, and carefully but swiftly invert the rice over a platter.
  • Garnish with the barberries and pistachios and serve right away.


Tahchin can also be prepared as a casserole in an oven-safe dish.  Covered and baked at 400 degrees F for 1 hour.
Tahchin can also be layered with lightly fried or roasted eggplants or seared chicken pieces and cooked as described above.  These layered Tahchin varieties are served as a one-pot meal.
Keyword eggs, rice, saffron, tahdig, yogurt
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