Ruz ma shayreeyeh (vermicelli rice)

Yield: 1 Servings

Measure Ingredient
1¼ cup Rice
½ cup Fideo vermicelli
2 tablespoons Butter or olive oil
2⅔ cup Water or chicken broth
\N \N Salt

"Syrians love this handsome rice dish with its tiny golden brown noodles that usually accompanies the wide variety of Levantine tomato-based vegetable stews. In Egypt, it's the rice served with Mlookheeyeh Soup, the national broth thick with fresh greens and herbs. Across the Arab world, vermicelli rice is a simple favorite usually prepared with fat-grained Egyptian rice or whatever medium-grained rice is available. Tossing the grain in a little butter or oil before adding the liquid helps to keep the kernels from sticking together. When chicken broth or bouillon is used instead of water, you have the original Middle Eastern specialty that inspired the packaged mix known as Rice-A-Roni." 1. Egyptian short-grained rice requires at least ½ hour of presoaking. Some cooks rinse it until the water runs relatively clear, soak it for up to 2 hours, and rinse it again several times before cooking. Converted rice is ready to use.

2. Crush the noodles between your hands to break them into pieces about ½ to ¾ inch long. Saute them in the butter or oil over medium heat, stirring frequently, until they are evenly golden brown.

Add the rice and stir-fry until the grains are all coated and glistening.

3. Pour on the water or broth, add the salt, and stir. Bring to a boil.

4. When the water level is equal to that of the rice, and little bubbly holes have appeared in the rice, cover and reduce the heat.

Simmer until done. The total cooking time is about 25 minutes.

Source: "The Arabian Delights Cookbook" by Anne Marie Weiss-Armush

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