Healthy Recipes

Holiday Jeweled Rice

This dish, which highlights fruits and nuts, is an especially good stuffing substitute.

Holiday Jeweled Rice
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9 cups water
2 tablespoons salt
3 cups long-grain basmati rice
1 cup finely slivered orange peel
2 large carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks
½ cup sugar
1 cup unsweetened dried cranberries
2 tablespoons slivered almonds
2 tablespoons slivered pistachios
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil


  1. In a large nonstick saucepan, bring 8 cups water and salt to a boil. Meanwhile, in a fine-mesh colander, rinse rice 4 or 5 times in warm water. Drain well. When water is boiling, pour in rice and boil briskly, 5 to 10 minutes, until rice is al dente. Drain into a fine-mesh colander, rinse with warm water, and set over a large bowl to finish draining.

  2. In a medium sauté pan, bring the orange peel and about 1 inch of water to a boil, then drain. In the sauté pan, combine orange peel, carrot sticks, sugar, and 1 cup water; simmer about 10 minutes. Add dried cranberries and stir for 2 minutes. Drain, and in a large bowl, mix with almond and pistachio slivers.

  3. In a large nonstick sauté pan, heat olive oil over low heat until shimmering . Spread a ½-inch layer of rice over bottom of pan, then a ½-inch layer of almondpistachio mix; repeat layering process until all ingredients are used. Cover with wax paper, gently pressing down to compress. Cover and cook for about 40 minutes.

  4. Remove cover and wax paper, turn heat to medium high, and cook about 10 minutes, until bottom layer of rice is golden-brown. (Lift gently with a spatula every few minutes to make sure rice doesn't burn.) Invert sauté pan onto large serving platter and crack the goldenbrown surface into bite-size pieces with a fork. Serve warm.

Nutritional facts: 

Per serving: 399 calories, 10 g fat (1 g saturated), 73 g carbohydrates, 5.7 g protein, 4.7 g fiber, 603 mg sodium (26% Daily Value).