When we were in Egypt and had guests over one time, one of them commented on how “mushy” my rice was. While I was taken aback at the lack of tact, it really didn’t measure up to Middle Eastern rice which is not mushy when prepared and you can eat it with your fingers. So here is how an Egyptian sister schooled me at making rice.

Here is Yemen, they sell Amreeki rice (however it tastes nothing like the rice I grew up on and I don’t really care for this; Basmati, and Mazah. (Of course there are other types too). I love the mazah rice and it very rarely comes out too sticky (unless we add too much water).


Plain Rice

3 cups rice

2 tbsp butter


salt, 1-2 teaspoons


  1. Put the butter in a saucepan over medium heat and let melt.

  2. Add the rice and stir until coated with butter.

  3. Add enough water to cover the rice (about 1/2 inch over the top of the rice) and give a quick stir.

  4. Add salt.

  5. Cover with lid, cook over low heat for about 30 -40 minutes or until rice is soft.

  6. Fluff with fork.

This method yields a non mushy rice that can be eaten easily with the fingers, insha Allah.

You can also add the famous Maggi cubes (chicken buillion cubes) to give it more flavor.

This is my own creation that I made up while here in Yemen.

Rainbow Tuna Rice

1 can of tuna

3 cups rice

2 tbsp butter

1/2 can pineapple chunks

2 tomatoes, chopped

1/2 green pepper, chopped

1 small onion, chopped

salt, 1-2 teaspoons


  1. Put the butter in a saucepan over medium heat and let melt.

  2. Add the rice and stir until coated with butter.

  3. Add onions and green pepper and stir.

  4. Add enough water to cover the rice (about 1/2 inch over the top of the rice)

  5. Add salt.

  6. Cover with lid, cook over low heat for about 30 -40 minutes or until rice is soft.

  7. Fluff with rice and add tomatoes and pineapple chunks.



7 Responses

  1. As salaamu3laykum wa ra7matullah
    I am a sister living in the UK al7umdulilah. This website caught my attention mashaAllah. MayAllah give youAjerfor it. Ameen!
    I was wondering if you have the recipe for SALTA the traditional Yemeni dish.

    Jazakillah Khere!

  2. wa alaykum us salaam wa rahmatullah.
    Don’t have the recipe, but my information man (my 15 year old son) thinks he can get the recipe from the restaurant across the street. (My method of learning how a lot of things are made). Will post it insha Allah if I am able to get it.

  3. jazakallah kherun wa barakAllahu fikum! Ameen (to both u and ur son mashaAllah) I have heard alot about this dish but have never really known how to make it al7umdulilah…

  4. As Salaamu3laki

    Its me again al7umdulilah. i hope you are in the best of health. i have another recipe im looking for inshaAllah… if you cant find it khere inshaAllah.
    i would like to know the recipe of another Yemeni dish called 3seed. its a sweet dish.

    jazakillah khere


  5. wa alaykum us salaam,

    I apologize Umm Jamaal, the restaurant across the street closed and I never got the recipe for salta. I have never heard of 3seed but will keep my eyes and ears open, insha Allah and let you know if anything comes up. Can you tell me any of the ingredients in it? I may have come across it but didn’t know the name………

  6. As salaamu alaikum wa rahmatullah

    I found this recipe on http://www.yementimes.com. If you are in the states there is a Yemeni restaurant in NY (don’t remember the borough) but it is near the infamous Indian restaurant (don’t remember the name) LOL. Anyways, they have Salta at this restaurant. Their lamb is so delicious and they have khubz with habbas sawdaa and asal (flat bread with black seed and honey) that is really good. They also have this dumpling thing with gravy. Ok, sorry don’t mean to give the whole menu. Anyways, here is the recipe.


    One cup of meat broth
    One tbsp Fenugreek powder
    Warm water for making the Hulba

    Meat broth
    _ kilo minced meat
    One onion
    3 garlic cloves grounded
    2 spoons of oil
    One cup of chopped fresh leak leaves
    20 grams (around three spoons) of chopped coriander leaves
    Four red tomatoes
    One spoon tomato paste
    Salt and spices

    Making the Hulba:
    1. Soak the fenugreek in cold water
    for 4 fours at least (the longer the

    2. Drain the old water and add new cold

    3. Blend the fenugreek with hand or with blender for 10 minutes then soak for five minutes

    4. Repeat step three until mixture is
    white and creamy

    Making the minced meat:
    1. Heat the oil

    2. Finely chop the onion

    3. Dice the onion with the grounded
    garlic in the oil and fry until golden

    4. Meanwhile finely chop the tomatoes

    5. Add salt and spices

    6. Add the minced meat and let cook
    with one cup of water for half an hour or until the meat is cooked

    Making the Salta:
    1. Heat the madarah until quiet hot

    2. Add the meat broth

    3. Make the minced meat mixture into
    small balls and put inside the broth
    while continue heating

    4. Finally four the Hulba on top of the
    mixture and serve immediately

    Note: you can substitute the meat with vegetables such as potatoes, ladyfingers or white beans. You can add one egg at the beginning by frying it in the heated Madarah.

  7. wa alaykum us salaam wa rahmatullahi wa bakatahu,

    JazakAllahu kheyr. I was just thinking about looking online for a recipe today for the sister who had asked about it. I passed the recipe you posted onto the sister who had asked for it. I have tried salta two different times from two different restaurants and didn’t care for it either time, lol. But my kids like it.

    It was funny because the last time we got it was from the restaurant across the street before it closed, and they let us take the pan home. So I washed it before we gave it back, lol, (of course they don’t expect people to wash the pan) and my son said they laughed and they were waiting to see if we cleaned it because we were amreeki, lol.

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