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Exotic Pilav

3 tb Vegetable oil
500 g Lean minced lamb or beef; (1lb)
1 Cinnamon stick
1/4 ts Ground allspice
150 ml Hot water; (1/4 pint)
1 tb Grated orange or lemon zest
50 g Pine kernels; toasted (2oz)
50 g Walnuts; roughly chopped (2oz)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For The Pilav
600 ml Chicken stock or water; (1 pint)
A pinch of saffron soaked in hot water; (optional) for 5 minutes
1 250 gram lon grain rice; (8oz)

Heat the vegetable oil and sauté the meat and spices, breaking up any lumps. Add seasoning and the water, cover and cook for 30 minutes.

Add the orange or lemon zest, pine kernels and walnuts and a little water if needed, stir and cook for 5 more minutes. Remove the cinnamon stick.

In the meantime, bring the stock or water to the boil for the pilau, add the saffron if using, and the rice and salt. Stir, cover tightly and cook as gently as possible, for 12-15 minutes, until all the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Serve the meat piled on top of the rice.

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