Bring water to a boil in a covered saucepan. Add butter, cumin, raisins, currants, zest, and rice. Stir the rice and return to a rolling boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Cook 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove from heat and add chives. Fluff rice with fork and transfer to a serving dish. Cover rice liberally with toasted sliced almonds or smoked almonds.