Yoghurt Tahdig Recipe , With Saffron (Crispy Perisan Rice)


Yoghurt tahdig is another of a range of traditional Iranian tahdigs. It has an attractive golden color and gives a wonderful glaze to your food.

It’s very tasty and has an appetizing appearance. It’s easy to make. If you add saffron too, its aroma will be perfect. You can go for yoghurt tahdig in different types of polo such as ordinary polo, zereshk-polo, and baaqaali-polo.

As I mentioned before, the Persian word tahdig is a combination of tah+dig, meaning bottom+pot. To see the recipes for bread tahdig and potato tahdig, have a look on the relevant articles I have uploaded previously.

It’s worth noting that yoghurt tahdig is similar to a popular, mainly northern Iranian food named Tahchin (tah+chin) which has many different recipes.

You can make tahdig in pots of any size. I promise you the tahdig will be so delicious that you’ll be eating it forever. So let’s go to the yoghurt tahdig recipe and make this golden colorful bonus:

Yoghurt Tahdig Recipe , With Saffron (Crispy Perisan Rice)

Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Soaking the rice1 hr
Total Time2 hrs 5 mins
Servings: 4 people


  • 3 cups Rice
  • 3 tbsp Yogurt
  • 1 Egg yolk
  • a little Saffron
  • 1 tbsp Oil
  • 1 tbsp Rose water
  • a little Cardamom powder
  • a little Salt


  • Soaking the rice: Clean the rice well, then rinse it several times and soak it in water for a few hours. If you're short of time (say 10 minutes), you'd better soak the rice in warm water.
    Soaking the rice
  • Prepare the materials. Combine yoghurt, egg yolk, saffron, oil, rosewater,cardamom and salt. Rinse the rice a few times so that it gets impurities removed.
  • Boiling the water: In a non-stick pot, pour some water and put it on the heat. The amount of water should be enough for two knuckles to be above the rice. Bring the water to a boil.
  • Pour the rice in the boiling water.
    Pour the rice n the boiling water
  • Add some salt. As for 3 cups of rice roughly one tablespoon of salt will be enough. Stir a bit so as not to let the rice grains stick together.
  • Draining the rice: Having half-cooked the rice, remove it from the heat and pour it into a drain. Rice grains ought not to be too soft, but rather firm. Do not put the lid on the pot. (cook until al dente)
    As for testing, when you take a grain of rice and place it under your teeth, the inside should still be slightly firm while the outside is cooked. Never allow the rice to cook and soften completely since in the next step they're going to steam and soften nicely.
    As a general rule, depending on the quality of rice it takes 3 to 5 minutes to get half-cooked. Of course, the cooking time depends on the grade of the rice and the gas heat; some sooner, some later (and some never these days!).
    half cooked the rice
  • Pour the rice into the strainer.
    Pour the rice into the strainer
  • Pour about 3 scoops of the rice into the ingredients ( yoghurt, egg yolk, saffron, oil). How much rice to pour depends on the size of your pot and whether you want a thick or thin tahdig.
    But the important thing is that you should add as enough rice as not toget an overly loose and watery mixture.
  • Put the pot on the heat and add two tablespoons of oil into it. Once itheats up a bit, pour the tahdig material into it and press with the back of a spoonor scoop so that it sticks well together and the surface gets flat.
  • Pour the remaining rice on it. Using a long toothpick or the scoop handle, make a few holes in the rice surface. The holes should get close to the bottom of the pot. This allows the steam to reach the bottom of polo well so that it can steam-cook uniformly. Wrap the lid in a clean towel and put it on the pot.
    Cook the rice over a gentle heat for about 40-60 minutes until it stews and the tahdig gets golden and crispy. If the heat is high, the tahdig will burn quickly because of saffron and its color will turn black.


Additional tips about yoghurt tahdig:

  • If you want a crispy tahdig, potato tahdig or bread tahdig are excellent choices. But if bread or potatoes are not readily available to you or you like the aroma of saffron as I do, make the yoghurt tahdig.
    The main ingredient is yoghurt and the rest are optional. But if you use all the ingredients of this recipe, it would be great and would get to the best result.
  • The amounts mentioned in this recipe are for a medium-sized pot. If you have a small pot, use two tablespoons of yoghurt + one egg yolk + half a tablespoon of rosewater + preferably saffron powder. You can even remove the rosewater. The mixture should not be too thin and watery.
  • If you’re using a large pot, add up the ingredients in the right proportion (maybe 2x) and pour more rice into the pot so that the tahdig gets the whole pot bottom.
  • Yoghurt shouldn’t be too watery. It’s better if it’s high-fat or thick and firm; So that we avoid of the material being watery.
  • Tahdig can have a thin layer in order to get prepared sooner. Alternatively it can be thicker. This depends on your will and the amount of ingredients you use for your tahdig.
Yoghurt Tahdig With Saffron or persian crispy rice
  • I added about 3 scoops of rice to the tahdig ingredients and used a medium-sized pot and I got a thin layer of tahdig.
  • If you don’t know what to do with the egg white and it’s difficult for you to store it, you can use the whole egg. But the clot in the egg white causes the fusty smell of egg. So it’s better to remove it and throw it away. If you use a whole egg, try adding rosewater and cardamom to compensate for the fusty smell and taste of the egg.
  • If you use a big whole egg and your pot is medium-sized (or small), add less yoghurt, for instance two tablespoons.
  • Eggs can be removed altogether from the yoghurt tahdig recipe. In this case, it is no longer called tahdig with yogurt and eggs.
  • You can use butter instead of oil. Butter makes it taste better.
  • You can use steamed saffron or saffron powder. Just make sure that the saffron is well ground and powdered. If it’s not fine-grained, it doesn’t dye much.
  • Yoghurt tahdig with eggs is delicious, even without saffron. Instead of saffron, turmeric can be used for coloring. For 3 tablespoons of yoghurt, 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric is enough.
  • If saffron is not available to you and you don’t want to use turmeric, there’s a trick. Use food coloring. Replace the yellow color, but of course it will not have the superb fragrance of saffron.
  • You can use dried vegetables in the tahdig. This way, the aroma of saffron rises next to the vegetables and will be amazing. If you have fried chicken, for example, pour dried dill in the tahdig and it will give a pleasant and attractive taste to your tahdig. You can use dried mint as well.
  • Wrap the lid of the pot or pan in a clean towel to prevent the steam from escaping. Be sure to do this especially if its edges are uneven and the steam is coming out.
  • If you soak the rice in hot water, its grains will grow better and taller.
  • You can combine yoghurt tahdig with bread tahdig. According to the bread tahdig recipe I’ve explained in a previous article, fry the bread in the pot and then pour the yoghurt tahdig ingredients in a thin layer on it and press with the back of a spoon.

Yoghurt Tahdig With Saffron

What kind of pot or pan can I use for tahdig:

You can use a pot or even a frying pan to make an ideal, crispy and golden tahdig. You can choose any pot you have at hand. It’s only important that tahdig pot have the following conditions to make tahdig with:

  • be non-stick so that the tahdig can be easily separated from;
  • doesn’t be too thin so that the tahdig doesn’t burn;
  • the lid can be completely seamed to prevent the steam from escaping.

Of course, you can also have tahdig in ordinary pots which are not non-stick. But there is a difference: in this case, the tahdig doesn’t separate well from the pot and must be lifted off with pressure by means of a spoon, so it may look like the picture below:

It may not be like a perfect tahdig, but still tastes nice.

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