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Festive Pilaf | Christmas Rice Side Dish

When you've had enough of the Roast Potatoes and need a new and exciting side dish, Festive Pilaf is just the right dish to make! Baked rice laced with leeks and sweet pears, studded with cranberries and toasted pecan nuts is the ultimate Christmas Rice side dish. All you need to do is mix everything together and bake for 35 minutes in the oven! Delicious!
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Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine British, Christmas
Servings 4 side portions


  • 250 g basmati rice
  • 1 vegetable stock cube + 500ml of boiling water
  • 20 g unsalted butter
  • 1 small leek thinly sliced
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 50 g dried cranberries
  • 1 pear cored, peeled and cubed
  • 50 g pecan nuts roughly chopped
  • a small bunch of parsley finely chopped


  • Preheat the oven to 180°C Fan.
  • Place rice in a colander and run cold water through it to remove the starch coating.
  • In an ovenproof dish, mix the rinsed rice, sliced leeks, pears, dried cranberries and nutmeg together. Add a cinnamon stick.
  • Dissolve a stock cube and butter in 500ml of boiling water (enough to cover the rice plus 0.5cm on top). Stir everything briefly, then cover with a large sheet of foil. Tuck the foil right under so not much steam can escape.
  • Place in the oven for 30-35 minutes, until all the stock is absorbed and the rice is cooked.
  • In the meantime, roughly chop the pecan nuts and lightly toast in a dry frying pan. Chop your parsley finely.
  • Fluff the rice up with a fork, sprinkle with toasted pecans and parsley and serve!
    We love this side with our Christmas Chicken (recipe available from 11th of December at https://somebodyfeedseb.com/christmas-chicken).
Keyword Christmas Pilaf, Christmas Rice, Christmas Rice Dish, Pilaf Recipe, Rice Side Dish, Rice with Cranberries, Rice with Leeks and Cranberries
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