As soon as the sweet, juicy scent of hot butter slowly spreads in the air and makes its way through the flat, butterflies start to flutter inside me. Just the thought of butter rice makes me happy. Even though I have the recipe here Butter rice it is simply called Riz in Arabic. And Riz (with a buzzing S) translates simply as: rice. But it is much more than just rice.
As children, we never had to ask when there would be riz again, because it was available several times a week. Besides pita bread, butter rice is the most common side dish in Lebanese cuisine – and sometimes it simply becomes a main course. I also like to eat steaming hot butter rice with a dollop of Greek yoghurt. It makes me feel like a child again and I’m happy up to my ears.
- Halabi, Rafik (Author)
When I wanted to prepare the butter rice myself for the first time, a porridge was created, which also wanted to crawl out of the pot and take over my kitchen – The Blob says hello … What happened? Too much rice, too much water and a pot that was far too small.
Yet the preparation is child’s play and is even a joy to watch. It is a beautiful sight when the butter melts and slowly throws small bubbles. And then this fragrance! Once the little vermicelli are toasted in the butter and the roasted flavors are added, it creates a little flavor explosion. If you’re going vegan, you can easily use butter-flavored canola oil.
My mother always likes to say, “We’ll now tease the Nüdelchen a little in the butter and then extinguish them again,” before adding the vegetable broth. How she comes up with “annoy”? Absolutely no idea! 😀
When I was a kid, I liked to pulse around in the butter rice and sort out the noodles and eat them one at a time. Today, I just stuff it all in at once.
I see – you’re probably wondering why there are vermicelli in it, aren’t you? The vermicelli provide a subtle roasted flavour and give the whole thing an interesting mouthfeel. It’s really hard to describe, but you can experience it: Just try a spoonful 😉
By the way: You can also prepare the butter rice with ghee instead of butter.
Recipe for Lebanese butter rice
- 230 g Basmati rice
- 35 g short vermicelli short soup noodles
- 2 tablespoon Butter (or butter flavored canola oil)
- 400 ml Vegetable broth
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- Wash the rice several times until the water is reasonably clear when you pour it off.
- Heat the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.
- Add the vermicelli and fry on a high heat until golden brown in the butter.
- Add the rice and stir everything briefly once.
- Deglaze with vegetable stock, add salt and cook for about 1 minute.
- Turn the cooker to the lowest setting and cover the pot with a lid.
- Leave the rice to soak for about 15 minutes.
- In between, carefully loosen the rice with a spoon.