Tunisian Spinach Rice Recipe (Riz Djerben) | PBS Food

Tunisian Spinach Rice (Riz Djerben)

Tunisian Spinach Rice recipe

From Aube Giroux of Kitchen Vignettes: With heavy spices, this steamed rice recipe is infused with hearty flavor, and it only has two steps.


Yield: 6-8 servings

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  • 2 cups organic white basmati rice
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 pound (2 bunches) fresh organic spinach, chopped
  • 1 large bunch flat-leaf parsley (2 to 3 cups, chopped)
  • 2 medium sweet white onions (about 2 cups chopped)
  • 1 medium head of garlic, chopped finely (about 1/4 cup chopped)
  • 2 medium potatoes, cubed
  • 1 medium tomato, chopped
  • 3 large carrots, chopped
  • 1 cup cooked chickpeas
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground caraway
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 small dried hot red pepper (or 1 tsp hot pepper flakes)
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 2 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper


  1. Rinse the rice well. Drain the water out and place the rice in a large bowl. Add the olive oil and tomato paste and mix well.
  2. Now add the chopped spinach, chopped parsley, chopped onion, chopped garlic, cubed potatoes, chopped tomato, chopped carrots, chick peas, and all the spices to the rice. Mix everything together very well.
  3. Pour this mixture into the top part of a large deep steamer and place on top of approximately 1 inch of boiling water. Make sure the top of the water isn't touching the bottom of the steamer.
  4. Cover the steamer with a lid and allow the whole thing to steam on medium heat for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, check the water level in the bottom pot and add more water if necessary.
  5. Carefully spoon out the steaming rice into a large bowl and gently mix it with a large wooden spoon. This will allow the rice to finish steaming more evenly.
  6. Return the rice mixture to the steamer and continue steaming with the lid on for 30 more minutes or until the rice is cooked to perfection. Serve warm and enjoy!
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