A friend of mine introduced me to Manaal al Alem's cooking. I try to follow her recipes , sometimes it gets a bit difficult as I dont understand much Arabic but can still figure out a few things like the ingrediants and do guesswork about what she probably is saying. So for this Eid I have a special Rice dish I prepared adapting one of her recipe
She used saffron but I left it out as not everyone can get their hands on saffron. Its an almost one pot dish so will have less washing up, Nobody wants to spend Eid day slaving away in the kitchen.
Recipe : Chicken and Rice dish recipe adapted from the show Manal Al alem show .
1 ( 1200g - 1400g ) chicken , skinned, but kept whole
pinch ground pepper
big pinch salt
1 medium onion, quartered
4 cloves garlic, halved
1" piece ginger , sliced
1 big pandan leaf ( or use 2-3 bay leaf instead)
10- 12 peppercorns
1 stick cinnaman
8 cardamon pods
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp tumeric
1 tsp ground cumin
2 cups rice
1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes
1 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp ground pepper
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp ground chilli powder
butter / ghee or vegetable oil
1 medium onion, sliced
big handful raisins
big handful kanamadhu , sliced or use almonds
handful fresh coriander leaves only, roughly chopped
4 cups water
Bring a large deep pan filled with 4 cups water , add onion, garlic, ginger, cinnamon, cardammon , peppercorns, 1 tsp salt .
Shred the pandan into strips and tie into a knot like this and add into the pan and bring the water to a boil.
While the water heats up, prepare chicken, rub pinch tumeric and salt and bit of pepper on the chicken.
Once the water boils, bring to a simmer and add the chicken and simmer for 20- 30 minutes covered.
Wash the rice and let it soak in water for 30 minutes , drain.
Check if chicken is cooked through, and remove the chicken onto a plate.
Strain the stock, Remove 2 1/2 cups and pour this back into the pan , use the rest for another recipe or use to make a soup etc..
Bring the pan back to a gentle boil, taste the stock add alittle more salt if needed and 1/2 tsp tumeric and 1 tsp ground cumin. Add the rice and cook, once the water is absorbed bring the heat to the lowest and cover and cook for 5 minutes. Swtich off , wait another 5 minutes and then fluff it up.
Once the chicken is cool enough to handle, make a mixture of 1/2 tsp ground pepper, 1 tsp garam masala, 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp chilli powder.
Heat a large frying pan , add 2 -3 tbsp oil or butter or ghee, fry the onions till golden, then add the nuts and raisins stir fry for 2 minutes, then remove to kitchen paper.
Into the same pan , add the whole spice rubbed chicken and brown the sides and back. Remove and cut into large pieces or joint them.
To serve, laddle rice onto a nice large serving platter, arrange the fried onion mixture, then the chicken and finally sprinkle with fresh coriander.
Serve with raita and tomato salad .