19 November, 2010

Plain Chicken Rice Pilaf

This recipe is just a dish that you pop on relatively quickly when you (for example) have run out of ideas of what to cook for the family or when you just feel the need to have a good hardy rice meal.
"Pilaf" is a Turkish word for a rice dish with meat. It can be cooked on the top of the stove or with a finish in the oven. It can be cooked with some fatty bits of meat or with lean cuts, with just a little oil to start. Of course, the fat makes for a altogether more savory dish. Anyway, here it is:
INGREDIENTS (serves 4):
  • 2 tbspoons vegetable oil;
  • 1 1/2 cups white round rice;
  • 1 medium or large onion;
  • half a chicken cut into parts, include dark meat;
  • chicken stock to cover (can use plain water);
  • salt & pepper to taste;
  • a pinch ground cumin.


Chop up the onion into small bits and sweat it in the vegetable oil in a thick walled cooking pot (cast iron or aluminum work best). When the onion bits are glossy put in the chicken bits and let them fry for a few minutes in the oil too. After aprox 5 minutes poor in the stock (or water) to cover everything. Bring to a boil, skim of the meat foam that forms on the top. Let boil on low heat for aprox another 25 - 30 mins. Now add the rice and stir frequently so it doesn't stick to the bottom for the first 3 mins. Boil the rice and chicken until the water reduces and the rice has cooked (is soft to the tooth), about 15 - 20 mins. Add salt, pepper, cumin, other spices to taste. Stir every 3 minutes. When the water is gone and the rice is soft you are done.
Some people like to put the pilaf in the oven, uncovered for the last 15 mins for a nice finish.
I served it with a side of red pepper pickles. Enjoy!

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