Persian Chicken Pilaf

Yet another delight gleaned and considerably adapted from Cuisine magazine. I have no idea if this is traditional or not, but it certainly employs the tastes and principles of Persian cuisine. Very tasty indeed, and destined to become a regular on our table.

1 tsp ground cumin.
½ tsp ground turmeric.
½ tsp ground cinnamon.
½ tsp ground ginger.
¼ tsp white pepper.
¼ tsp salt.
1 tblsp olive oil.
250g lean chicken meat, diced.
1 cup basmati rice.
1 cup frozen broad beans
2 cups chicken stock
Zest and juice of 1 orange
¼ cup olive oil.
1 onion, peeled and chopped.
1⁄4 cup slivered almonds, toasted
2 large silverbeet leaves, ribs removed, thinly sliced.
¼ cup coriander greens, chopped.
½ cup yoghurt [optional].

Mix the spices and the salt together thoroughly and add the oil to create a paste. Place the meat in a small container, add the spice paste and stir thoroughly until well and evenly covered. Cover and set aside for at least 2 hours. Place the rice, stock, orange zest and juice, and the beans in a bowl. Add the stock, stir well, cover and set aside for at least 2 hours. Prepare the silverbeet and spring onion, place in a bowl and set aside.

Heat the oil in a sauté pan over a hot flame. Stir fry the meat until sealed all over then add the onion and fry until soft. Add the rice mixture and stir through until well mixed and beginning to bubble, scraping the bottom to remove anything that might have caught. Cover tightly, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes.

Without lifting the lid, remove the pan from the hob and allow to sit for 10 minutes. Remove the lid, stir the greens through and fluff up the mixture with a fork. Serve immediately with a dollop of yoghurt on top of each serving.

Serves: 2.

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