Keshk 8.000

Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post; tableware from Crate and Barrel

Apr 9, 2014

This is a lovely, soothing dish often served at Seders held in the Karaite tradition, which adheres literally to the words of the Torah.

To serve as a soup course, see the VARIATION, below.

Make Ahead: The rice needs to soak for several hours or up to overnight. The cooked keshk tastes better after several hours' or a day's refrigeration. Reheat over low heat, adding broth as needed.

8 - 10

When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 8-10 servings; makes about 7 cups

  • 1 1/2 cups short-grain brown rice
  • Leaves from 1 bunch green Swiss chard, stemmed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, or more as needed
  • 3 cloves garlic, pressed with a garlic press
  • 3 cups homemade or no-salt-added chicken broth (may substitute vegetable broth)
  • 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh dill fronds (may substitute heaping 1 tablespoon dried dill)
  • 5 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup lime juice or lemon juice, or to taste
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons kosher salt


Place the rice in a mixing bowl. Cover with an inch or two of water; soak for several hours or up to overnight. Drain, discarding the water.

Transfer the rice to a food processor; pulse for 5 to 10 seconds or until most of the grains have been cut in half. Transfer to a bowl.

Working in batches as needed, add the chard leaves to the food processor and puree to the consistency of a pesto.

Heat the oil in a skillet or medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the chard puree and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring often, until most of the moisture has evaporated and the oil turns a deep green. Add oil if the chard puree sticks to the pan.

Push the chard to one side; add the garlic to the cleared area of the pan and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat.

Bring the broth to a boil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the dill, then the chard mixture and rice. Once the mixture starts bubbling, cook, stirring often to make sure the rice does not stick to the bottom of the pot.

Gradually add the 5 cups of water, stirring constantly and allowing the mixture to return to a low boil for a few minutes each time before adding more water. Continue this process until the rice is cooked through and has a velvety texture; this should take 10 to 20 minutes. If the rice is still al dente after 20 minutes, cover the pot and cook, testing the rice every 5 minutes until soft.

Stir in the nutmeg, pepper, juice and salt (to taste). Taste, and adjust the seasoning as needed.

Serve warm or at room temperature.

VARIATION: To serve as a soup course, add another cup of broth at the end of cooking.

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Recipe Source

Adapted from a recipe by Remy Pessah of Mountain View, Calif.

Tested by Mike Cutler.

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