Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Chicken Majboos or Chicken Kabsa.

Today, I am sharing  a Arabic special rice, called 'Chicken Majboos' or 'Chicken Kabsa'..It can be called as a fool method of preparing biryani..As I told earlier in Malabar Veg Biryani , in biryani,     masala and rice are cooked seperately, which is layered alternately and put into slow flame called Dum..Biryani has lot of ingredients. But in Majboos,ingredients are very less and its easy to prepare. Its healthy and tasty too.In Majboos, meat masala and rice is cooked in one pot,instead of cooking both seperately..That means,uncooked rice is added to the masala broth and cooked everything together...The meat which is cooked in masala broth is taken out and grilled...Normally big pieces of mutton or chicken is used in Majboos..Its preparation is similar to Thalashery's (Northern part of Kerala) 'Irachi Chor',will share it in my post later..Now-a-days, Majboos is common in parties and restaurant too..I saw the chef preparing majboos in malayalam cookery show..But they do modify the spices to suit Indian taste, but I didn't :) ..Most of the Arabic food used less ingredients and their dish is not spicy like Indian..But their dish is tasty and healthy too..Being,born and brought up in Middle East, I love most of the Arabic food like shawarma. falafel, grilled kababs and charcoal meat, rigah etc. U.A.Eins and Bahraini's called this dish as Majboos, while Saudi Arabian's and Yemeni's called this dish as Kabsa...Do prepare this dish and impress your family..Lets move to the recipe..


     For Gravy:
  • Chicken leg with thigh/ chicken ,cut into 4 big pcs - 500 gm
  • Basmati rice - 3 cups
  • Kabsa Masala ( Arabic masala) / Homemade kabsa masala - 2 tbsp ( recipe given below)
  • Onions,sliced - 2 large or 3 medium sized.
  • Large green Chilies,slit halves - 2 no.s 
  • Tomato puree - of  1 1/2 large tomato ( make a puree of it without adding water)
  • Garlic - 6 cloves + 2 cloves chopped 
  • Ginger - a small pc
  • Knor chicken seasoning / 1 maggie chicken cube - optional
  • Coriander leaves - 1/2 handful chopped
  • Carrot,diced large - 1/2
  • Potato, diced large - 1 small
  • Quail eggs / Hens Eggs - to decorate ( optional)
  • Toasted pin nuts/cashews/Almonds - to decorate.
  • Loomi( dry whole lime) - 1 ( can substitute it with juice of 1 lime).
  • Saffron - a pinch mixed with 2 tbsp of milk
  • Olive oil / butter - 1 1/2 tbsp

     For Homemade Kabsa Masala:
  • Peppercorns / pepper powder - 1 tsp
  • Coriander seeds/ coriander powder - 2 tbsp
  • Cumin seeds - 1 1/2 tsp
  • Dry red chilies - 2 to 3 no.s ( can use chilli flakes or paprika powder instead)
  • Cardamom - 2 no.s
  • Cloves - 3 no.s
  • Bayleaf - 1
  • Nutmug powder ( jaatika) - a pinch ( if having)
  • Cinnamon - 1" stick

  • Soak basmati rice in a water for about 30 mins. Drain and keep aside.
  • Soak loomi ( dried lime) in a hot water for 10 mins.
  • Wash and clean the chicken thoroughly and make slits around the chicken..Drain it and keep side.
  • Grind all the ingredients mentioned in 'Kabsa masala' along with 6 cloves of garlic and a pc of ginger and make into paste. If using readymade kabsa masala,ignore grinding part and combine it with ginger garlic paste.
  • Marinate chicken with half of kabsa masala and salt and refrigerate for 1/2 to 1 hr.
  • In a large wide pan, heat olive oil/butter in a pan, add sliced onion with salt and saute till light brown.
  • Add 2 cloves of chopped garlic and green chilies and saute for a sec.
  • Add tomato puree and saute for few mins.
  • Add half of kabsa masala and saute till raw smell goes away.
  • Add marinated chicken and vegetables and mix well.
  • Add knor chicken seasoning or  powdered maggie chicken cube and saute well ( optional ).
  • Add 6 cups of water ( 1 cup of rice = 2 cups of water) and salt and mix well.
  • Make a hole in the loomi ( it is done to penetrate the juice of it) and add it to the water. You can substitute it with squeezed lime juice if you don't have it. 
  • Close the lid of vessel and let the vegetables and chicken cook for 15 to 20 mins.
  • Off the flame. Strain the stock and take out the chicken and vegetables as shown in the picture 4.
  • Grill  or shallow fry the chicken with little oil or butter for few mins.Do not make it too dry.(see pic 6) .Chicken is already cooked,no need to fry for too long. It is done mainly to get grilled or crispy effect. Can grill the vegetables too ( if using). Keep chicken and vegetables aside..
  • Add  cooked sliced onions and loomi back to same vessel...Measure the stock,it might be reduced to 5 cups ( as previously we had 6 cups of water)..Add 5 cups of stock + 1 cup of normal water into the vessel and boil it. ( See pic 3)
  • When bubble comes, taste and add salt and drops of oil to prevent rice from sticking..Add drained basmati rice into it ,keep it as medium flame for 3 mins and close the lid.
  • Then keep it into high flame ( be careful not to get burnt at bottom)..When water evaporates, immediately reduce the flame to sim and turn the rice from bottom to top and cook for few mins.
  • Open the lid and sprinkle saffron milk and garnish it with chopped coriander leaves. Close and cook for about 1 min at slow flame. 
  • Off the flame and serve rice on a large plate, place grilled chicken and veggies on top.
  • Decorate it with tossed nuts and hardboiled quail/hen eggs ( optional).
  • Serve warm with raita,pickles or chutneys of your choice.

  • Readymade Kabsa masala /Arabic masala and Loomi is available in almost all the stores in Middle east and Kerala too. If you prefer,make homemade kabsa powder as mentioned in the ingredient. You can grind it in large quantities and store it in air-tight container.
  • You can make homemade loomi by sun-drying the lime and store it in airtight container. Otherwise substitute with lime juice.
  • Adding vegetables is optional.
  • Always use same cup for measuring rice and water.
  • Its a simple dish to prepare for large gathering and parties.
  • Always use big piece of chicken/meat while preparing majboos, as big piece of meat taste better ( I don't have bigger piece of chicken, So I used medium sized chicken)

 “Sending this entry to Ahlan Ramadan –The Healthy Way” hosted by Rafeeda, Hasna and Humi