• Yield: Serves 4

  • Time: 10 minutes, plus 1 hour soaking prep, 30 minutes, plus 20 minutes resting cooking

Region: İzmir, all regions

A great side with stews, this dish is popular all over the country. It is served at wedding banquets in some regions.


  • 300 g / 1 1/2 cups / 11 oz medium-grain rice

  • 2 1/2 tsp salt

  • 100 g / 1/2 cup / 3 1/2 oz butter

  • 70 g / 1/2 cup / 2 3/4 oz orzo pasta

  • 900 ml / 3 3/4 cups / 30 fl oz chicken stock, boiling

  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

The Turkish Cookbook The Turkish Cookbook by Musa Dağdeviren


Put the rice into a large bowl, add 2 teaspoons salt and pour over 1 litre (4 1/4 cups/34 fl oz) boiling water. Soak for 1 hour at room temperature. Drain and rinse the rice under cold running water, until the water runs clear. Drain the rice in a colander for 5 minutes.

Heat the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat, add the orzo pasta and sauté for 4 minutes, stirring continuously, until the orzo starts to brown. Reduce the heat, add the rice and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the chicken stock, black pepper and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook, covered, for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat, tightly cover the pan with a dishtowel, then seal tight with the pan lid. Wrap the entire pan in another dishtowel and let rest for 20 minutes. Unwrap the pilaf, stir gently and serve.

From The Turkish Cookbook by Musa Dağdeviren. Photography by Toby Glanville. Copyright 2019 Phaidon.