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Festive Cypriot Rice Pilaf with Vermicelli

Festive Cypriot Rice Pilaf with Vermicelli

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A colorful and savoury Festive Cypriot rice pilaf with vermicelli pasta, pine nuts and raisins.

It makes a great side dish to any meat dishes but it can also be hearty enough for a meal with the addition of leftover roasted chicken, lamb or pork.

My mom used to make this for us whenever there was any leftover roasted chicken or lamb.

How my mom made the rice pilaf

She sautéed the vermicelli (fides in Greek) until it turned gold, added the grated onion and sautéed it for a few minutes. Then she added the rice and mixed it for a couple of minutes, added the shredded cooked chicken (or other cooked meat), salt, pepper, pureed tomato and chicken broth and cooked it for about 10 – 20 minutes (depending on type of rice used) or until the rice was cooked.

Instead of rice, you can also make this pilaf with bulgur wheat, which is much more simpler to make but without the raisins or pine nuts.

Note: Fides are Greek dry noodles, similar to vermicelli but even thinner and have no eggs in it.

Fides noodles image
Fides noodles

 This was served as a light meal with some Greek yoghurt. 

When I want to make it as a side dish, I don’t add the cooked meat and to make it more festive, I usually add some raisins (or craisins) and pine nuts.   Some times, when pomegranate is in season, I like to mix in some pomegranate after the rice pilaf is cooked.

rice pilaf with raisins and pine nuts image

I have tweaked this recipe many times and made it in many ways.

A more simple Cypriot Rice Pilaf

At the time of making this pilaf, I only had some frozen artichokes and a mixture of other frozen vegetables (peas, corn, peppers). 

However, since then, I have made this recipe many times with different fresh vegetables.

Cypriot rice pilaf with vegetables image
Rice pilaf with vegetables image

Rice Pilaf with Vegetables

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

A colorful and savoury herbed rice pilaf with carrots, red bell peppers, corn, and peas makes a great side dish to any meat dishes but it can also be hearty enough for a meal with the addition of roasted chicken or pork.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of long grained rice
  • 60 grams pine nuts, toasted
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 cups of chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • (Any vegetables fresh or frozen)
  • (I used 2 artichokes and about 1 cup of green beans, red pepper, peas, corn, carrots etc)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 2 nests of vermicelli (angel’s hair)
  • 1 tsp butter (optional)*
  • 1/4 cup raisins

Instructions

  1. Steam the vegetables or boil them until soft and set aside.
  2. In a non-stick sautéing pan toast the pine nuts but be careful not to burn them. Remove to a plate.
  3. In a large skillet or sauce pan, heat the olive oil and butter and sauté the onion until translucent.
  4. Add the garlic and mix until fragrant.
  5. Break the vermicelli nests into smaller pieces and sauté them as well for a few minutes until they begin to brown.
  6. Add the rice and sauté a few minutes to coat with the olive oil.
  7. Add the chicken broth, salt and pepper, cover with the lid and simmer for 15 minutes, mixing every now and then.
  8. Mix in the vegetables and cook for another five minutes.
  9. Add the raisins and pine nuts and mix.

Notes

If you want to mold the rice, mix in some more butter, so that the rice holds together.

Nutrition Information
Yield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 288Total Fat 11gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 6gCholesterol 55mgSodium 198mgCarbohydrates 30gFiber 4gSugar 4gProtein 18g

Did you make this recipe?

Tried this recipe? Tag me @ivyliac and use the hashtag #kopiaste!

Update:  December 2017

Below you will fin a new recipe with a video,  using mushrooms in the pilaf.

During the holidays, I made this rice pilaf with fresh mushrooms, which I love and I added some walnuts and raisins and some spices in it, which makes it delicious.

This Easy Rice Pilaf with Mushrooms is perfect for a festive dinner as it is tender, fluffy, and flavorful.

It’s the perfect side dish to accompany any meal, anytime.

Festive rice pilaf with mushrooms image

I served it with Curry, which I made with leftover turkey.

Rice pilaf with curry image

A similar recipe is included in my cookbook Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiaste!

Festive rice pilaf with mushrooms image

Easy Rice Pilaf with Mushrooms 

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

This Easy Rice Pilaf with Mushrooms is perfect for a festive dinner as it is tender, fluffy, and flavorful. It's the perfect side dish to accompany any meal, anytime.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups parboiled rice
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1  green onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 10 button mushrooms, finely chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • A pinch of dried ginger
  • 2 tbsp raisins (black or white)
  • 2 tbsp coarsely chopped walnuts
  • 1 roasted red pepper, chopped into smaller pieces
  • 2 tbsp parsley, finely chopped
  • Sweet paprika to sprinkle on top
  • 1 tbsp butter

Instructions

  1. Boil rice, according to package instructions, drain and set aside.
    Simultaneously, heat the olive oil and sauté the green onion.
  2. Add the garlic and sauté for a few seconds until fragrant.
  3. Add the spices and mushrooms and sauté until they wilt, mixing for a few minutes. Set aside.
  4. When the rice is cooked, drain and add the butter, the mushrooms, the sweet peppers, the walnuts and raisins and mix.
  5. If using a mold, unmold and sprinkle some paprika on top.
Nutrition Information
Yield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 157Total Fat 8gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 6gCholesterol 5mgSodium 68mgCarbohydrates 18gFiber 1gSugar 3gProtein 3g

Did you make this recipe?

Tried this recipe? Tag me @ivyliac and use the hashtag #kopiaste!

rice pilaf with raisins with vermicelli image

Festive Traditional Cypriot Rice Pilaf with Vermicelli

Yield: 4 - 6 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

A colorful and savoury Festive Cypriot rice pilaf with vermicelli pasta, pine nuts and raisins.

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp pine nuts, toasted
  • 1 nest vermicelli pasta (fides)*
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, grated
  • 1 cup parboiled rice
  • 1/2 cup passata
  • 1 1/2 cups homemade chicken stock (or water with 1 chicken bouillon)
  • 1 tbsp sea salt
  • Freshly grated black pepper
  • 1 tbsp raisins or craisins
  • 1 tbsp butter

Instructions

    1. Heat a large sauté pan on medium high heat. Add the pine nuts. Toast, stirring occasionally until lightly browned and fragrant. Remove the pine nuts from the hot pan to a bowl, set aside.
    2. Add the olive oil and vermicelli and sauté it for a few minutes until it becomes gold.
    3. Add the grated onion and sauté it for a few minutes.
    4. Then add the rice and mix it for a couple of minutes, until coated with the oil.
    5. Add the raisins and season with salt and pepper, add the tomato and chicken broth and cooked it for about 10 - 20 minutes (depending on type of rice used) or until the rice was cooked.
    6. Add the butter and pine nuts and mix.
    7. Put it in a mold and when it cools invert it in a platter.

Notes

* Fides are Greek dry noodles, similar to vermicelli but even thinner and have no eggs in it.

You can make it vegan by substituting chicken stock with vegetable stock and adding vegan butter or margarine.

Nutrition Information
Yield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 197Total Fat 9gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 6gCholesterol 7mgSodium 1266mgCarbohydrates 25gFiber 1gSugar 7gProtein 4g

Did you make this recipe?

Tried this recipe? Tag me @ivyliac and use the hashtag #kopiaste!

PIN FOR LATER

Collage Festive Rice Pilaf image

Kopiaste and Kali Orexi!

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Nicki

Friday 26th of March 2010

Hi, i'm sorry but i can't find the recipes, when i click on the name of the recipe only the pictures come up, am i doing something wrong?

ivyliac

Friday 26th of March 2010

I am not sure what is wrong. Check back in a while.

Ivy

Friday 6th of March 2009

Sue, it's a Tupperware mold.

Sue

Friday 6th of March 2009

Have a question? How do you mold this recipe? The presentation is very nice.

johnny

Tuesday 30th of December 2008

First time here. Thanks for this wonderful recipe.

Lubna Karim

Wednesday 24th of September 2008

Nice to learn another vegetarian recipe. Will definitely try it.

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