How about a one-pot meal with Asian flavours? Succulent and perfectly seasoned bites of boneless chicken thighs on a bed of delicious and appetising rice with some sweet vegetables? This one-pot Asian chicken and rice truly tastes like a dream. I developed this recipe during this lockdown when the family craved for pan Asian food at home. Since time was limited and work kept piling up, I thought of this way of working for just one recipe that would combine a lot of flavours. And the results were so spectacular that I had to share it here.
This Asian chicken and rice comes together real quick and with some basic Asian pantry essentials. I love adding vegetables to this meal as it makes it complete. It’s a quick and easy hack to satiate those pan Asian cravings we all have from time to time.
The secret to the power packed flavours in this recipe lies in its simple seasoning and fresh ingredients. Lots of aromatics and black pepper powder are used to marinate the succulent pieces of chicken. I have used boneless chicken thighs as they work really well in such recipes and remain moist and juicy throughout. The chicken pieces are first fried in the pan, and then added to the beautiful rice, vegetables and sauces towards the end. The whole mix is left to get slow cooked on the lowest flame possible and allowed a few more minutes of rest. The result is fluffy and separate grains of rice in a delicious sauce that is impeccable.
Making that perfectly fluffy rice
For this pulao, find yourself the best quality long grained basmati rice. Wash the rice thoroughly with water till its clear. Next, soak it for exactly 30 minutes in room temperature water. After that, strain the water and keep the rice as dry as possible. I used a sieve to release the water and keep it undisturbed. Do not soak for more than 30 minutes as the rice will become too wet and will cook very fast, and end up sticking to each other. Soaking for longer duration might also break the rice. Soaking is an essential pre-requisite to get the perfectly fluffy rice that you see in this egg pulao.
Correct water quantities
Next is the perfect amount of water for the rice to cook. I have added the exact measurements for this recipe, but the usual and easy rule to follow is – For every cup of rice that you use, use half cup more water than that. For example, if you use 1 cup of rice, use 1.5 cups of water. If you use 2 cups of rice, use 2.5 cups of water. And the water should always be hot if you’re making the rice in a pot. Otherwise, the temperature difference might ruin the rice. This rule applies only if you soak the rice for 30 minutes before cooking it.
Low flame and rest
Lastly, perfectly fluffy rice is always cooked in low flame. If you’re making rice in a pot, make sure you cover and cook it in the lowest flame possible. And once its done, do not serve immediately. Turn off the gas and let it rest for another 10-15 minutes. This will give the perfect edge to the rice and make it bloom to its best ability.
Let’s take a look at the ingredients.
Preparation time – 30 minutes
Cook time – 40 minutes
Serves – 5
For the chicken marination:
- 600 g boneless chicken thighs
- 2 tbsp ginger garlic paste
- Salt to taste
- 1 tbsp black pepper powder
For the rice
- 1 1/2 cups long grained rice
- 2 tbsp oil (vegetable/olive)
- 1 cup finely chopped onions
- 2 cups roughly chopped carrots
- 1/2 cup roughly chopped red bell pepper
- 1/2 cup roughly chopped yellow bell pepper
- Salt to taste
- 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
- 1/4 tsp black pepper powder
- 2 cups hot water
- 3 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
- 1 tbsp Oyster sauce
- 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
- Chopped spring onion greens for garnish
- Wash the rice thoroughly under running water till all excess starch is drained. Soak in water for 30 minutes.
- Wash and pat dry the boneless chicken thighs with a paper towel. Rub the chicken pieces with salt, black pepper powder and ginger garlic paste. Mix really well and set it aside for ten minutes till you chop the vegetables.
- Heat oil in a pan. Add the marinated chicken pieces and fry till they turn crispy from the sides. Cook the chicken for seven to eight minutes and set them aside once done.
- In the same skillet or pot, add the finely chopped onions. Fry them for a few minutes till they start to get translucent and brown on the sides.
- Once the onions are caramelised, add some ginger garlic paste and fry till the raw aroma of the paste dissipates.
- Add the carrots and stir for a minute.
- Gently add the soaked rice to the pan and mix. Do not break the grains.
- Season with salt and black pepper powder.
- Pour the Asian sauces – sweet chilli sauce, Oyster sauce and dark soy sauce. Mix well.
- Add 2 cups of hot water and once it starts to boil, add the fried chicken pieces on top.
- Cover and cook on lowest flame possible for 20 minutes.
- Lift the lid in 30 minutes and add the bell peppers on top. Do not disturb the rice. Cover and cook on lowest flame for another ten minutes.
- Check the rice with a fork. Turn the flame off and let the rice rest for another 15 minutes.
- Serve hot after garnishing with some spring onion greens.
I hope you try this one pot Asian chicken and rice super soon! If you have any doubts, comments, or feedback, please reach out to me in comments or my social media handles.
Find me on Instagram – www.instagram.com/slurrpilicious
Find me on Facebook – www.facebook.com/slurrpilicious
Find me on Youtube – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCA-cJoo27OLSCswI4sy6lzA?