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Turkish pilaf with saffron & goji berries

Turkish pilaf with saffron & goji berries

A star rating of 4.5 out of 5.2 ratingsRate
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  • Preparation and cooking time
    • Prep:
    • Cook: -
  • Easy
  • Serves 2

We've put together the ultimate recipe for brain health, packed with brain-boosting nutrients like cinnamon, almonds and goji berries

  • Freezable
Nutrition: per serving
low inkcal454


  • 2 large garlic cloves
  • generous pinch of saffron
  • 3 tsp rapeseed oil
  • 200g diced skinless turkey thigh
  • 85g wholegrain basmati rice
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vegetable bouillon
  • 3 celery sticks , finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tbsp dried goji berries
  • 1 medium onion , halved and very thinly sliced
  • 100g baby spinach leaves
  • 25g flaked almonds


  • STEP 1

    Finely chop the garlic and set aside to activate (see tip). Meanwhile, pour 2 tbsp boiling water over the saffron and set aside to infuse. Heat 2 tsp of the oil in a large, non-stick sauté pan with a lid, then add the turkey and fry for 5 mins, stirring frequently, until it starts to brown.

  • STEP 2

    Stir the rice and cinnamon into the pan, then pour in 400ml boiling water and the bouillon, and stir well. Add the celery, thyme, goji berries and lots of ground black pepper. Cover the pan tightly to prevent steam escaping, and cook over a low heat for 20 mins.

  • STEP 3

    Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in a non-stick pan and add the onion. When it starts to soften, cover the pan for 5 mins to steam it a little more. Take off the lid and slowly fry for 12-15 mins until golden, stirring frequently.

  • STEP 4

    After the rice has cooked for 20 mins, check the water level – if the rice is still too nutty and the liquid has all been absorbed, add up to 100ml more water. Stir in the saffron, cover again, and cook for 5-10 mins until the rice is tender.

  • STEP 5

    Add the garlic and spinach, cook briefly to wilt the leaves, then turn off the heat. Toss through the fried onions and almonds. Cover the pan and leave to rest for 5 mins before serving.


Chopping and crushing garlic promotes an enzyme that maximises its health benefits – so it’s best done 10 minutes before use to allow it to activate.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, October 2015

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A star rating of 4.5 out of 5.2 ratings

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