Poor Man’s Pilau

Poor Man’s Pilau


2 medium potatoes peeled, diced, washed, deep fried and kept aside
1 small onion sliced finely
2 medium tomatoes sliced finely
2 cups basmati rice washed and kept aside
250gms diced chicken
half cup frozen peas
half tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp minced garlic
2 tsp minced ginger
chili (minced or powder) to taste
3 cloves
3 green cardamons
half inch cinnamon stick
4 whole black pepper.
1 bay leaf
salt to taste
Sprig of fresh coriander chopped finely.
3 tbsp clarified butter(ghee).
4 cups water


  1. Heat oil in a deep bottomed pan. Add sliced onion, bay leaf, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon stick and pepper. 
  2. Fry till onion is soft and brown.  Add turmeric, salt, garlic, ginger and chilly and and two tablespoons of water.  Stir well and fry till spice is golden and separates from oil.
  3. Add sliced tomatoes and cook till tomatoes are mashed and water has dried up. Add diced chicken and fry well. 
  4. Cover and let cook in own juices for ten minutes. 
  5. Add peas, mix well and cook for further five minutes. 
  6. Now add rice and mix well with chicken, peas and spices. 
  7. Add water.  Let simmer on a low flame stirring occasionally so that rice does not stick to bottom of pan.
  8. Cook rice till water dries up but do not add any additional water.
  9. When water in rice has evaporated and rice is cooked garnish with fried potatoes and coriander. 
  10. Remove pan from fire and keep covered for 15 minutes so that rice cooks in its own steam. 
  11. Serve with a salad.

Source:  Ainsley Williams

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