indian chicken pilaf

Amys Gluten Free Pantry

I personally like to spice my Indian food until my nose runs and I require three glasses of water just to get through the meal. But my kids are a different matter. This is a recipe I’ve adapted to their tastes and they gobble it up. However, if I’m making it for adults, I toss in plenty of crushed red pepper or cayenne.

There’s lots of spices in here, but if you like the flavors of India, these spices should be part of your pantry. Don’t confuse lots of ingredients with “difficult”. The only thing complex here are the flavors. Try to buy your spices bulk so you can buy only what you’ll use, which is a great way to keep the spices fresh.

This is a nourishing dish that pairs really well with a crispy green salad with a creamy dressing with pomegranate seeds tossed on top or a cooling Cucumber Salad.

Active time: 30 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes
Yield: Serves 6

8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
3 T olive oil
, divided
2 tsp. ground tumeric
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. garlic power
2-3 tsp. salt
, divided
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes or cayenne
(if you like it hotter), omit for nightshade allergy
7 cardamom pods (green or brown), slightly crushed
7 whole cloves
2 whole star anise
1 whole cinnamon stick
, broken into 4 pieces
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 red onion
, pulsed in a mini food processor so that it is minced
2 c. Basmati rice
2 1/2 c. chicken stock
1/2 c. dried currants

  1. Mix tumeric, cumin, garlic, 1 tsp. salt, coriander and pepper together in bowl. Set aside.
  2. Heat 2 T olive oil in large skillet.
  3. Dredge the chicken thighs lightly in spice mixture and place into skillet. (You should have at least 2 teaspoons of spice mixture left over – set that aside).
  4. Brown chicken for about 6 minutes. Flip and brown other side for 6 minutes. Remove chicken from skillet.
  5. Add 1 T olive oil to skillet. Add onion and leftover spice mixture to skillet along with cardamom pods, cloves, star anise and cinnamon stick to skillet. Saute for 1 minutes until the onion begins to wilt.
  6. Add rice to skillet and stir until the rice looks milky, about a minute.
  7. Add broth to skillet and lay chicken pieces atop the rice. Add currants and bring to a boil, covered.
  8. Once you reach a boil, turn down to lowest temperature and simmer for 15-20 minutes, until rice is tender. Add remaining salt to taste.

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