quinoa tahdig

This is one of our mother's brilliant creations. It's a great alternative for basmati rice if you something lighter and healthier! This quinoa tahdig doesn't just look absolutely stunning, it also hits so many flavour notes, sweet, salty, tangy plus there's lots of texture from the sunflower seeds and wild rice! 


200 g white quinoa
50 g wild rice
2 bay leaves
1 cinnamon stick
1 star anise
1 tsp sugar
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 onion, peeled, halved and sliced
1 clove of garlic, peeled, halved and sliced
1 head kohlrabi, peeled and chopped into cubes
Stalks of one head of broccoli
30 g dried barberries (if you can't get these, dried cranberries also work fine)
20 g dried pitted dates, roughly chopped
30 g sunflower seeds, roasted in a hot pan
2 tbsp apricot chutney
salt & pepper to taste
1 g saffron, ground to a fine powder with a mortar and pestle and added to 25 g melted butter
1 head savoy cabbage, leaves removed and washed


1. Soak the quinoa and wild rice in salted, lukewarm water for around 20 minutes.

2. Bring a pot of of water to the boil. Add salt, 1 tsp sugar, bay leaves, cinnamon stick, star anise and cardamom. Drain the quinoa and wild rice, then add to the boiling water and cook until soft but still holding its shape. Drain and set aside in a sieve.

3. Heat 1 tbsp of coconut oil a frying pan. Add onion, garlic, kohlrabi, broccoli stems, barberries, dates and sunflower seeds and fry for around 4 minutes until starting to soften. 

3. Add 2 tbsp apricot chutney and stir to combine. Take the vegetables off the heat and carefully fold the under the quinoa and wild rice mixture.

4. Oil a Persian rice cooker with the saffron butter, line the bottom with cabbage leaves, fill with the quinoa-vegetable mixture and cook on setting II. (if you don't have a rice cooker you can also do this in the oven. Preheat the oven to 180°C and cook for around 20-25 minutes in a medium-sized heat proof pot, with the lid clamped on tight.)