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Albaloo Polo Recipe, a Carnival of 1000 amazing flavors

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If you want a mixture of flavors, Persian people will definitely suggest Albaloo Polo or Persian cherry rice. Albaloo Polo with meatballs has a carnival of sweet, sour, salt, Carbohydrates, fat, proteins, soft, crispy, and bright, uplifting colors, all packed into one surprisingly humble dish.

It is a delicious and flavorful meal and an authentic guest meal that satisfies your pallet’s different taste buds. 

Actually, this food usually is made in summer due to the cherry, which is a summer fruit. Albaloo Polo is originally from Shiraz. In this article, Cookery Magazine will teach you the easiest recipe for cooking Persian cherry rice. 

Persian Cherry rice Recipe
Ground beef1 pound
Black pepper1 teaspoon
Saffron1/4 tablespoon
Olive oil5 tablespoons
Salt3 teaspoons
Turmeric powder1 teaspoon
Basmati rice4 cups
Slivered pistachio or almond (if you desired)As much as needed
sugar1/4 cup
onion1 large
sour cherry1 cup

The first step: Making Meatballs ready for Persian Cherry Rice

To get sorted, mix 1 pound of ground beef with 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder, 1 teaspoon of black pepper, and one large grated onion (Keep in mind to squeeze out the onion juice after you grated your large onion). Let it rest for 68 hours in the fridge so that the meat of swarms all the goodness and flavor.

The second step

When you want to start creating your meatballs. Add 4 to 5 tablespoons of olive oil or any vegetable oil into a large saucepan and start shaping your meatballs.

It’s traditional to make tiny meatballs for this dish but feel free to make them larger.

An advantage of making tiny meatballs is that they will cook throughout evenly and in a uniform fashion.

Once all the meatballs have been formed, sauté them until they’re fully cooked and crispy on a medium heat which typically takes about 15 to 25 minutes.

The third step: Rice in Albaloo Polo

To cook your rice bring 8 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of salt to a boil on medium-high heat. Add 4 cups of rinse basmati rice and boil on high heat uncovered for about 5 to 12 minutes.

Until the rice has become semi-cooked, additionally, keep in mind that you must soak your basmati rice in water for about 4 to 6 hours before cooking when rice grains are semi-cooked, which means that the exterior is soft, but the interior is quite firm. Later drain the rice in a colander, rinse and set it aside.

The fourth step: Soaking Saffron for Persian cherry rice

Mix 1/4 of a tablespoons saffron thread with 1/4 a cup of hot water to make your liquid saffron. Let it soak for about 15 minutes, and you’ll have this fantastic liquid saffron with vibrant color.

The fifth step: Cherries for Albaloo Polo

For this recipe, you need 1 to 1 and a half cups of sour cherries, and you need to remove the seeds either manually or use your machine.

Once you’ve removed the cherry pits, leave them at room temperature overnight, and all produce juice that is necessary to make your sour cherry syrup.

The sixth step

Place the sour cherries in a saucepan and 1/4 of a cup sugar or Monk fruit sweetener and cook on medium-low heat uncovered for 3 to 5 minutes.

If you decide to use frozen sour chicken please let them defrost first and then you can go ahead and remove the pits

The seventh step

Juices from the cherries combined with sugar will create a luscious cherry syrup that will get used with the meatballs. Stream the cherries and cook the sauce on medium-low heat for 10 minutes until it gets slightly thickened.

Cherries for Albaloo Polo

Add 1/4 of a cup to half a cup of the reserved cherry syrup to meatballs in addition to 1 to 2 tablespoons of liquid saffron. Swirl around for the syrup to be better mixed and code the meatballs.

The eighth step

Now it’s time to mix all the ingredients and steam the rice. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of ghee into a large pot on medium-low heat. In a small bowl, mix one to 2 cups of lightly cooked rice with 2 to 3 tablespoons of liquid saffron.

Gently mix and spread evenly in the bottom of the pot. This will be the crispy rice referred to as Tahdig, which means the bottom of the dish (we thoroughly explain Thadig in Morasa Polo Recipe).

The ninth step

Repeat the same process but this time, mix 1 to 2 cups of lightly cooked rice with a cup of your cherries syrup.

Begin layering your ingredients in the large pot, which includes saffron rice, white basmati rice, sour cherries syrup, rice meatballs, and cherries; repeat this process until all of the rice meatballs and cherries have been layered in the pot. Next cover the pot and allow the rice to steam over medium-low to medium heat for about 30 to 35 minutes.

Persian cherry rice

The tenth step: Serving Albaloo Polo

After your rice has been steamed, remove it from the pan and place it on a serving platter. Arrange the meatballs on the serving platter, and you may Garnish them with pistachios, almonds, or rose petals.

I highly recommend serving this dish with a side of yogurt and a half or fresh herbs. Don’t forget to comment for us with your recommendations.

Serving Albaloo Polo

Please note that you can serve these sour cherry races with stewed beef, stewed lamb, or roasted chicken.

To make delicious, high-quality meatballs, you need high-quality meat.

I would recommend blending two or three kinds of ground meat for making meatballs.

Albaloo Polo can easily be made vegetarian or vegan by simply not using natural beef.

Sometimes 2 or 3 spoons of slivered pistachio and almond are mixed with saffron rice.

You can increase or decrease the amount of cherry sugar according to your taste, and you can also cook the albaloo polo as sweet and sour.

Cherries are sometimes flavored with a little cumin, cinnamon powder, or a mixture of cardamom, cloves, and ground ginger.

If fresh cherries are not available, cherry jam can also be used.

To keep the color of cherries, it is better to prepare this dish in a copper or enamel dish.

Many people say that cherries must be cooked in an enamel dish to preserve their color, while I assure you that any dish can be used to cook this fruit; This container can be copper or Teflon.

albaloo polo majlesi

Although it is economical to use not-so-pretty cherries (unusable in the fruit basket) to make albaloo polo, but, choose good quality and firm cherries to make this dish look better when it is ready.

To pit the cherries more easily, put them in ice water for a few minutes to harden them and remove the pits more easily and not get wrinkled and ugly.

Many believe that cherries should be boiled in a little water before consumption, but I recommend roasting the cherries in just a little oil after pitting, and pouring 3 tablespoons of cherry jam syrup into it when consuming.

In addition to cherries, you should also add a little cherry syrup to the food to make the rice a little purple or amethystine in color.

Of course, you should choose a jam that has the natural color of cherry and is transparent, and avoid consuming burnt sugar jams that have a brown or black color.

If you use burnt sugar jams, the food will not get the right color and it will not look good.

The right spice for this dish is saffron, so don’t forget saffron to make it more fragrant.

This dish, because of the cherry syrup, may burn quickly, so it should never be placed on a high flame and the pot should be placed on a flame spreader.

The best suitable “Tahdig” for this dish is bread and of course the best option between Persian bread is Tufton bread.

albaloo polo

We use taftoon bread, because cherry syrup goes well with this bread; Tufton bread creates a fairly thick crust whose crispiness is a delightful experience for any consumer.

The appropriate drink with this dish is orange blossom syrup or mint extract, and it is better to leave only a bowl of plain yogurt with mint and consume them along with Albaloo polo and avoid using shallot yogurt or sour yogurt.

Persian cherry rice

This dish is full and colorful enough and there is no need to overcrowd it.

Avoid pouring the jam into the rice.

If you don’t like your rice to turn pink, or if there is a lot of rice, it’s better, fry the cherry jam and slivered pistachio slices with a little butter or brew it with a small amount of rice and then pour it on the whole rice dish and arrange the chickens next to it.

You can also use beef instead of chicken. In this situation, after cooking, either cook the meat along with rice or put it separately next to the rice.

Instead of jam, you can cook cherries with a little sugar. It depends on your taste whether you want it sweet or sour.

Since cherry has a cold taste and nature, it is better to use warm spices such as cumin or ginger when consuming this food.

Albaloo Polo is one of the types of pilaf in Iranian cooking. This dish is mostly prepared in parties and celebrations, but its preparation is easier than making luxurious dishes.

This summer food, like cabbage pilaf (kalam polo), has reached all cities from Shiraz and is suitable for the taste of most Iranians. Even those who don’t like sweet food can try it sour or sweet-sour.

Iranian albaloo polo is one of the most popular traditional dishes, which is often a most important piece of formal gatherings and parties. Although many people attribute its origin to Azerbaijan; But many consider its origin to be Shiraz.

The background of the Persian cherry rice is not known for sure. But what is clear is that this traditional Iranian food is cooked in different ways in the central and northern parts of our country and is one of the Iranian dishes.

Iranian cherry pilaf regains its prosperity every year with the beginning of the summer season and the ripening of cherries.

Of course, many people freeze cherries for the winter in the summer to enjoy its unique flavor in other seasons.

albaloo polo with ghelgheli meatballs

But without a doubt, Iranian albaloo polo made with fresh cherries is something else. This dish can be served with red meat or chicken.

What it shows is that this food has special fans among the people of the north of the country and some people consider this food to be related to the northwestern cities of Iran.

It is interesting to know that people in the south of the country are not particularly interested in this food.

As we go from the desert and Azeri-speaking areas to the northern cities of the country, the minced meatballs in this dish become the meat of birds, especially chicken.

Cherry is useful for people who have a hot temper and nature; But it is not useful for people who are cold-tempered, unless they consume it with warm and dry foods such as spices and saffron.

Cherry is useful for relieving heat and thirst, removing blood concentration, and removing bile, and purifies the blood.

Thank you for accompanying us with a summer and authentic Iranian food, Albaloo polo. If you have any questions, it’s my honor to answer. Enjoy your exploration of Persian cuisine!

Please share this article with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and other social media. 🧡

Albaloo Polo Recipe, a Carnival of 1000 amazing flavors

Recipe by Fatemeh BanialiCourse: Main CourseCuisine: Persian FoodDifficulty: Hard
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Cooking time

1

hour 
Calories

300

kcal

Ingredients

  • Ground beef, 1 pound

  • Black pepper, 1 teaspoon

  • Saffron, 1/4 tablespoon

  • Olive oil, 5 tablespoons

  • Salt, 3 teaspoons

  • Turmeric powder, 1 teaspoon

  • Basmati rice, 4 cups

  • Slivered pistachio or almond (if you desired), As much as needed

  • sugar, 1/4 cup

  • onion, 1 large

  • sour cherry, 1 cup

Directions

  • The first step: Making Meatballs ready for Persian Cherry Rice
    To get sorted, mix 1 pound of ground beef with 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder, 1 teaspoon of black pepper, and one large grated onion (Keep in mind to squeeze out the onion juice after you grated your large onion).
    Let it rest for 68 hours in the fridge so that the meat of swarms all the goodness and flavor.
  • The second step
    When you want to start creating your meatballs. Add 4 to 5 tablespoons of olive oil or any vegetable oil into a large saucepan and start shaping your meatballs.
    It’s traditional to make tiny meatballs for this dish but feel free to make them larger.
    An advantage of making tiny meatballs is that they will cook throughout evenly and in a uniform fashion.
    Once all the meatballs have been formed, sauté them until they’re fully cooked and crispy on a medium heat which typically takes about 15 to 25 minutes.
  • The third step: Rice in Albaloo Polo
    To cook your rice bring 8 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of salt to a boil on medium-high heat. Add 4 cups of rinse basmati rice and boil on high heat uncovered for about 5 to 12 minutes.
    Until the rice has become semi-cooked, additionally, keep in mind that you must soak your basmati rice in water for about 4 to 6 hours before cooking when rice grains are semi-cooked, which means that the exterior is soft, but the interior is quite firm. Later drain the rice in a colander, rinse and set it aside.
  • The fourth step: Soaking Saffron for Persian cherry rice
    Mix 1/4 of a tablespoons saffron thread with 1/4 a cup of hot water to make your liquid saffron. Let it soak for about 15 minutes, and you’ll have this fantastic liquid saffron with vibrant color.
  • The fifth step: Cherries for Albaloo Polo
    For this recipe, you need 1 to 1 and a half cups of sour cherries, and you need to remove the seeds either manually or use your machine.
    Once you’ve removed the cherry pits, leave them at room temperature overnight, and all produce juice that is necessary to make your sour cherry syrup.
  • The sixth step
    Place the sour cherries in a saucepan and 1/4 of a cup sugar or Monk fruit sweetener and cook on medium-low heat uncovered for 3 to 5 minutes.
    “If you decide to use frozen sour chicken please let them defrost first and then you can go ahead and remove the pits”
  • The seventh step
    Juices from the cherries combined with sugar will create a luscious cherry syrup that will get used with the meatballs. Stream the cherries and cook the sauce on medium-low heat for 10 minutes until it gets slightly thickened.
    Add 1/4 of a cup to half a cup of the reserved cherry syrup to meatballs in addition to 1 to 2 tablespoons of liquid saffron. Swirl around for the syrup to be better mixed and code the meatballs.
  • The eighth step
    Now it’s time to mix all the ingredients and steam the rice. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of ghee into a large pot on medium-low heat.
    In a small bowl, mix one to 2 cups of lightly cooked rice with 2 to 3 tablespoons of liquid saffron.
    Gently mix and spread evenly in the bottom of the pot. This will be the crispy rice referred to as Tahdig, which means the bottom of the dish (we thoroughly explain Thadig in Morasa Polo Recipe).
  • The ninth step
    Repeat the same process but this time, mix 1 to 2 cups of lightly cooked rice with a cup of your cherries syrup.
    Begin layering your ingredients in the large pot, which includes saffron rice, white basmati rice, sour cherries syrup, rice meatballs, and cherries; repeat this process until all of the rice meatballs and cherries have been layered in the pot.
    Next cover the pot and allow the rice to steam over medium-low to medium heat for about 30 to 35 minutes.
  • The tenth step: Serving Albaloo Polo
    After your rice has been steamed, remove it from the pan and place it on a serving platter.
    Arrange the meatballs on the serving platter, and you may Garnish them with pistachios, almonds, or rose petals.
    I highly recommend serving this dish with a side of yogurt and a half or fresh herbs. Don’t forget to comment for us with your recommendations.
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