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Mediterranean Chicken Pulao



    Spice Mix

    • 1/2 teaspoon saffron
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice/Pimento powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried whole lime powder or 2 dried limes
    • 1 kg whole chicken cut into 8 pieces
    • 1/4 cup butter
    • 1 onion finely chopped
    • 6 cloves garlic minced
    • 4 green chillies chopped
    • 1/2 teaspoon red chilly powder
    • 1/4 cup tomato puree
    • 1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained
    • 1-2 carrots peeled and grated
    • 2 whole cloves
    • 1 pinch ground nutmeg
    • 1 pinch ground cumin
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
    • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
    • 2 1/4 cups basmati rice
    • 3 1/4 cups hot water
    • 1 cube chicken bouillon
    • 1/4 cup raisins
    • 1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds



    • Mix together the saffron, cardamom, cinnamon, allspice, white pepper, and lime powder in a small bowl, and set the spice mix aside.
    • Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Stir in the cloves. Once the aroma comes out add the onion; cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Add in the garlic and sauté for few seconds.
    • Add in the green chillies and red chilly powder.
    • Add the chicken pieces and brown them over medium-high heat until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Mix in the tomato puree.
    • Stir in the canned tomatoes with their juice, the grated carrots, nutmeg, cumin, coriander, salt, black pepper, and the spice mix.
    • Cook for about 3 minutes; pour in the water, and add the chicken bouillon cube.
    • Bring the sauce to a boil, then reduce the heat to simmer and cover the pot. Simmer until chicken is no longer pink and the juices run clear, about 30 minutes.
    • Gently stir in the rice. Cover the pot and simmer until rice is tender and almost dry, about 25 minutes; add the raisins and a little more hot water, if necessary. Cover and cook for an additional 5 to 10 minutes or until the rice grains are separate.
    • Sprinkle the toasted slivered almonds over the dish and serve.


    ✔️ Its best to use basmati rice for this. I used a different rice because that was only available in my kitchen at that time.
    ✔️ Traditionally what Arabs do is that they take out the chicken from gravy once its cooked and roast it on high flame to get that char look on top of the chicken. They then arrange the roasted chicken on top of the cooked rice while serving. If you are doing this step, it is best to use chicken with skin on. Skinless chicken can also be used.
    ✔️ Pine nuts can also be added to the rice.
    ✔️ Adjust the heat according to your preference.