Saturday, 24 May 2014

Chicken pilau rice

This chicken pilau is common in the Pakistani, Punjabi/Karachi regions. What I loved most about this is that it is so delicious, full of flavour, yet mild for those who cannot bare too much spice. It also isn't so time consuming, and really straight forward.

  • Skill level: Easy
  • Serves: 6-8 people
  • Preparation time: 35-45 mins
  • Cooking time: 15-20 mins
What you will need:

1 + 1/2 cups basmati rice

For the stock 

1 baby chicken, cut into eight pieces
1 tsp salt
1 medium onion, peeled and cut into quarters
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp whole black peppercorns
4 cardomoms
1 bay leaf
6 garlic cloves, peeled
1 inch ginger
1 tsp coriander seeds
3 cups boiling water

For the sauce

2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 small onion, peeled and finely sliced
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 + 1/2 tsp ginger-garlic paste (I made by grating ginger and garlic)
1/2 medium tomato, chopped
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 cup plain yoghurt
1 tsp garam masala powder
2 cardomoms
1 tbsp of freshly chopped mint leaves

How to make:

1) Place the rice in a bowl, rinse under running water a few times, then add warm water and set aside to soak

2) Add all the ingredients under 'for the stock' in a large pot. Bring the stock to a boil, then cover and leave to boil over medium heat for 20 mins. Strain the stock once the chicken is tender, keeping the stock for later use

3) In a pan, add the oil over medium heat. Once hot, add the onions and cook until golden brown. Remove 1/4 of the onions and set aside for later use

4) Add the cumin seeds, garlic and ginger paste, tomatoes, salt, chilli powder and coriander powder to the remaining onions and stir for three minutes

5) Add the yoghurt, garam masala powder and cardamom, and cook over medium/high heat till the tomatoes are tender (at least a few minutes)

6) Add the chicken pieces to the sauce, and mix well, allowing to simmer for a few more minutes

7) Place three cups of the stock (if you haven't got enough, add water to make it up to three) back into the pot, and add the sauce with the chicken into the pot too. Drain the rice and add it to the pot, and cook uncovered over high heat for five minutes

8) By five minutes the water should have started to dry up, sprinkle the browned onions you had set aside, and the mint leaves, place foil over the pot and securely cover with a lid, then cook over low heat for a further 15 minutes (then check if the rice is cooked)

Serve with a chutney, yoghurt, salad, or it is so delicious even on its own. MashAllah a definite dish to try, you will just love it! Enjoy :)


  1. Thank you. Alhamdulilah it is :)

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  3. Chicken and rice is a go-to dish an my house. I can not wait to taste this sauce. I have never had anything like it but it sounds delicious.

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