Saffron Rice with Green Peas, Pine Nuts & Tarragon

With end of season heirloom tomatoes on hand both from our garden and our local CSA, I have had my thinking cap on this week on original ways to use them.  A batch of homemade tomato sauce is always a good choice, a classic caprese salad is a must, and of course sliced right onto a turkey sandwich at lunch.  For dinner last night, I decided to stuff a couple of the ripe tomatoes with a yummy saffron rice studded with sweet green peas, fresh tarragon and buttery pine nuts.  The tomatoes make for a nice color compliment in the dishes overall presentation and their sweet burst of flavor when baked for a bit is a lovely contrast in texture to the whole dish as well.  This rice dish would also be nice served on its own, or even in zucchini boats or halved, baked sweet bell peppers.

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Saffron Rice with Green Peas, Pine Nuts & Tarragon

  • Prep time:
  • Cook time:
  • Total time:
  • Yield: 4
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Recipe type: Side dish


  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 1 big pinch of saffron threads
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • grinding of black pepper
  • 1 cup frozen sweet green peas, thawed
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh tarragon leaves, chopped
  • 3 Tablespoons pine nuts


  1. In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil along with the garlic over medium heat. Cook for 30 seconds, then add in the basmati rice and the saffron threads. Cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, for 1 more minute, or until all of the rice grains are coated in the oil. Add in the stock and season with the salt and pepper. Stir, cover the saucepan, and reduce the heat to low. Cook for 18-20 minutes, or until the rice is fluffy and the liquid absorbed.
  2. Stir in the green peas, tarragon and pine nuts. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.

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