Spring has sprung! In LA, spring greeted us with something akin to a monsoon. There was thunder, heavy downpours, and oh yeah, a marathon. I celebrated by staying indoors with warm tea and a Harry Potter marathon on tv. Of course I had to make something delicious to go with all of that lazying around and I had just the perfect one pot meal to do that. This recipe is as good as any takeout and maybe better because you know exactly what is going into it. The chicken comes out so tender. In my grocery shopping rush, I bought chicken wings instead of drumsticks, but they worked out well. The spices in the rice give it warmth and the sriracha on the side gives the dish heat. Cucumbers are the perfect accompaniment to cool your mouth down. I'm sort of addicted to cucumbers lately, I'm already thinking of more fun ways I can use cucumbers this spring and summer.
Thai-Style Chicken Biriyani
(Adapted from Saveur)
Makes 6-8 servings
6 shallots, roughly chopped
8 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 5-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
1 1/2 tablespons ground coriander
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground tumeric
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon kosher salt plus more to taste
6 chicken wings, separated at the joint
6 boneless skinless chicken thighs, halved crosswise
2 tablespoons peanut oil
2 1/2 cups jasmine rice
1 small Japanese cucumber, thinly sliced
Thai-style chili sauce, such as Sriracha
In a blender or food processor, combine the shallots, garlic, ginger, coriander, cumin, tumeric, 1 teaspoon of salt, and ground pepper with 1/3 cup water. Puree to a paste.
Toss the chicken and spice paste together in a large bowl until well combined. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the chicken marinate for 1 hour.
Heat the oil in a large saucepan or dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and all of the spice paste and cook, stirring occasionally until the paste is caramelized and the chicken begins to brown, about 12 minutes.
Add the rice and cook, stirring occasionally, for 1-2 minutes until the rice is lightly toasted. Add salt to taste and 2 1/4 cups water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook until the rice is tender and the chicken is cooked through, about 30 minutes.
Remove the pot from the heat and allow it to sit, undisturbed, for 15 minutes. Uncover and use a fork to gently toss together the chicken and the rice. Serve immediately with the cucumbers and the hot sauce on the side.