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Tahdig Style Pineapple and Thai Chile Skillet Fried Rice

Early in my professional career in tech, I had an Iranian colleague who I really saw as a mentor. Mind you, her mentorship was not with regard to our work, she had lots of thoughtful advice on relationships, the struggles of motherhood (I had no children at that time) and cooking. She is the one who introduced me to the method of cooking rice in this recipe. One of the things I love most about cooking rice like this, is that it can all be prepared well in advance, then the last quick skillet crisp can be done quickly right before serving.


1 cup Long Grain Rice (Jasmin, Basmati, etc.)

5 tablespoons oil, peanut or other variety

2 eggs, scrambled

1/4 cup grated Carrot

4 cloves minced Garlic

1 teaspoon grated Fresh Ginger

4 oz Pineapple tidbits, drained, 3 teaspoons juice reserved

1-6 Thai Chiles finely sliced (1 for very mild rice, 6 for spicier rice)

3 teaspoons Fish Sauce (omit to make vegetarian)

1 Tablespoon finely slivered or chopped Basil Leaves, any variety

Slivered Red or Green Onion and Lime Wedges for Garnish


  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Boil rice for 10 minutes, then drain and rinse in cold water. Set prepared rice aside to complete drain.

  • In a 10-14 inch cast iron skillet add 1 Tablespoon oil and bring to high heat. Quickly cook scrambled eggs and breakup into small pieces. Combine cooked scrambled eggs and drained rice in a large mixing bowl.

  • Return skillet to the heat and saute carrot, garlic and ginger for 2 minutes. Then add to mixing bowl with rice and stir in with pineapple tidbits.

  • Combine pineapple juice, fish sauce, Thai chiles and basil leaves. Pour over rice mixture and stir in.

  • Add remaining 3 Tablespoons of oil to skillet and get hot over medium heat.

  • Add rice mixture to skillet. Pressing to compress slightly. Allow rice to cook undisturbed for 10-12 minutes.

  • Turn rice out onto a serving plate and serve with raw onion slivers and lime wedges. Additional garnishes to consider: fried garlic, pineapple, additional basil and chiles.

  • Squeeze fresh lime wedges over rice.

Makes 6 side servings.

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