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How To Make Chicken Pilau

How To Make Chicken Pilau

Simpler to make than biryiani, and a variation of pilau rice, Chicken Pilau is a tasty dish with origins in Southern India. We teamed up with Shahena Ali from the Maharaja restaurant in Benfleet, to show you how to make it.


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Step 1: You Will Need:

  • 3 cups (750ml) Basmati Rice
  • 5 1/2 cups (1380ml) water
  • 2 strands of Saffron
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • 4 tbsp ghee
  • 1/2 tbsp garlic and ginger paste
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves
  • 2 tbsp yoghurt
  • 1 pinch of chilli powder
  • 3 chicken breasts, skinned and cut into cubes
  • 2 cardamoms, pods should be crushed
  • 1 tbsp sultanas
  • 1 tbsp blanched almonds
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Large Saucepan
  • 1 Frying Pan
  • 2 large spoons for stirring

Step 2: Wash Rice

Wash the rice until the water runs clear and then drain and set aside.

Step 3: Heat Ghee and Add Spices

Heat half of the ghee in a large saucepan and fry the onion until it has turned golden. Now add the cinnamon, cloves, cardamom pods.

Step 4: Mix Together

Now add the rice and ginger and garlic paste to the onion and ghee mixture and stir until the rice grains are well coated with ghee.

Step 5: Add Water

Now add the water.

Step 6: Bring To Boil

Cover and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a very low flame and cook whilst covered for 20 minutes

Step 7: Cook Paste

Heat the remaining ghee in a separate frying pan, add the sultanas, almonds, salt and also add the yoghurt, stirring often. Let the paste cook until it starts to split and release oil/ the melted ghee separates slightly from the yogurt.

Step 8: Add Chicken

Now add the chicken pieces, the garam masala and chilli powder to the frying pan and cook over a medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through

Step 9: Stir and Serve

Stir the chicken mixture into the rice and leave to stand for 5 minutes before serving