Known in Lebanon as Riz B Hummus, has to be my oldest son’s favorite lunch as he eats it practically every day. The trio of allspice, cinnamon, and cloves add warmth, and a slight spicy sweetness to grains of white basmati rice. Creamy chickpeas and bits of ground beef are in here too, but are secondary to the rice. Serve it with a tangy cucumber and yogurt salad, some fresh sprigs of mint, and dinner will be all set.
by Julie Awad
⅓ recipe Pressure Cooker Chickpeas
1 small, finely diced
1 lb ground beef
2 cardamom pods
2 whole cloves
1½ tablespoons allspice
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
3 teaspoons salt, or to taste
1 bay leaf
1½ cups basmati rice
2 cups boiled chicken bone broth
½ cup pine nuts, toasted
1 recipe Cucumber and Yogurt Salad
Prepare the Pressure Cooker Chickpea recipe or use 2 cups of canned chickpeas. Drain and set aside.
In a large pot or Dutch Oven with a lid, add olive oil to coat the bottom of your pan and heat on medium-high. Wait for the oil to get hot and then sauté the onion until tender and translucent. Add the ground beef, stir and cook until brown.
Meanwhile, add all the ingredients for the spice mix to a small bowl and wash the basmati rice. As soon as the beef is cooked through, add the spices and stir well to season the meat and onion. Continue to cook for another 3 minutes.
Add the drained rice to the pot and mix well with the meat and the spices. Stir in the cooked or canned chickpeas and then carefully add the boiling water (water should cover rice, add a little more if needed).
Wrap a clean kitchen towel around the pot lid by placing the lid in the center of the towel and bringing the diagonal corners over the handle and tying them. Repeat on the other side. This is the best way is to keep the moisture from dripping on your rice.
Cover with the towel lid and cook for about 20 minutes, or until the rice is fully cooked. Remove from heat and let it rest for at least an hour. This allows the steam to settle, the flavors to set in, and the rice to fluff up to its full length. After the rest, gently scoop the rice from bottom to top to remix the content.
Toast the pine nuts on a baking tray in a 350°F oven for about 5-6 minutes or until golden brown. Watch carefully as they brown quickly. Set aside.
Spoon the rice and chickpeas into individual bowls and garnish with the toasted pine nuts. Serve with a side of Cucumber and Yogurt Salad.