Chicken pilaf

  • Preparation time: 15 minutes + marinating
  • Cooking time: 35 + resting
  • Total time: 50 + marinating and resting

Serves: 4 - 6


8 chicken thigh fillets
4 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves
1 tsp green cardamom pods
½ tsp coriander seeds
6cm piece cinnamon stick, halved
2 bay leaves
300g basmati rice, rinsed several times
600ml hot chicken stock
300g broad beans, blanched and skinned
2 x 200g packs baby courgettes, sliced into rounds
28g pack coriander, roughly chopped
25g pack parsley, roughly chopped
½ x 20g pack dill, roughly chopped
¼ x 25g pack mint, leaves only, roughly chopped
Sliced green chillies and lemon wedges, to serve

200ml full fat yogurt, plus 100ml extra, to serve
A pinch of saffron
Zest of 1 lemon
2 cloves garlic, crushed
10g root ginger, finely grated


1. Cut the chicken into bitesize pieces. Put into a bowl with the marinade ingredients, season and mix well. Cover and chill for at least 2 hours, or overnight.

2. Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a large casserole. Remove any excess marinade from the chicken and pat dry with kitchen paper. Fry the chicken in batches for 5 minutes, adding a little more oil if necessary, until golden. Remove and set aside.

3. Return the casserole to a medium heat, add the remaining oil, onion, spices and bay leaves. Fry for 8-10 minutes, until the onion is golden. Return the chicken to the pan and cook for another 2 minutes until cooked through with no pink meat. Add the rinsed rice to the pan. Stir well, then spread in an even layer. Pour over the stock then season. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.

4.Add the broad beans and courgettes. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat. Cover with a tea towel or 3 layers of kitchen towel and then the lid. Leave for 10 minutes. Stir the coriander, parsley and dill into the rice, leaving a handful to garnish. Mix the mint into the extra yogurt and season. Serve the pilaf with the yogurt, green chilli and lemon wedges on the side.