2 1/2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1/4-1 teaspoon saffron threads, (see Ingredient Note)
1 cup long-grain brown rice
2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3 medium yellow summer squash, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 pound raw shrimp, (21-25 per pound), peeled and deveined
1/3 cup tightly packed fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
2 tablespoon lemon juice
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
Bring water, 1/2 teaspoon salt and saffron to taste to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add rice, return to a boil, cover and reduce the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook until the water is absorbed and the rice is tender, 40 to 45 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
About 10 minutes before the rice is done, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add squash and cook, stirring occasionally, until just tender (do not brown), 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in shrimp and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Stir in mint and cook for 30 seconds. Stir in lemon juice; remove from heat. Season with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Serve over the rice.
Ingredient Note: Saffron, the world’s most expensive spice, is the dried stigma of a crocus and contributes a pungent flavor and intense yellow color to food. It is sold in threads and powdered form.