Recipe: Riz Bel Bazela

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Did you know there are an estimated 91 languages and dialects spoken in Bristol? Whilst language can be a barrier, food is a universal language that can bring people together. This is what 91 Ways is all about: bringing the 91 language communities in Bristol together with stories about food & recipes people love. 91 ways shared with us one of their favourite recipes: Susan’s Riz Bel Bazela (rice and peas) – a Syrian recipe.


1 cup Arborio risotto rice

3 carrots peeled and diced

1 big cup of peas

200g of mincemeat

A sprinkling of pine nuts and flaked almonds

Vegetable oil

Salt and pepper



  1. Soak a cup of rice in very hot water for an hour with half a tsp of salt.
  2. While the rice is soaking, fry the mincemeat in a little vegetable oil (with a dash of salt and pepper) until it is almost dry and put to one side.
  3. Drain the rice and rinse until the water runs clear.
  4. Peel and dice the carrots and cook until tender.
  5. Combine the carrots, peas and some pepper with the rice. Add a cup of hot water to the mixture and cook for 10 minutes on a medium heat. Add a couple of extra spoonfuls of water, turn the heat low and continue to simmer until the rice is cooked, and the water has evaporated.
  6. To serve as individual portions, take a small bowl and put a sprinkling of pine nuts and almonds in the bottom. Then add a layer of mincemeat, followed by a layer of the rice, carrot and pea mixture. Gently press down and cover with a plate. Hold the bowl and plate together and quickly turn upside down. Leave for one minute to settle and then remove bowl to reveal portion.
  7. Serve with salad and yoghurt with cucumber and mint

Read the rest of Susan’s story on the 91 Ways website.


91 Ways aims to celebrate the rich heritage and traditions of food from different cultures in Bristol by sharing our dishes, recipes, and stories together and by coming together to connect with each other.

Join them at events across the city and online for competitions, inspiring recipes and news about our events. You can even share your own story. Head on over to their website, Twitter or Facebook to find out more.

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Wriggle | Award-winning app for food drink and fun in Bristol, Brighton & London.

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