Mandi is a traditional dish from Yemen of meat, rice, and spices. It is also eaten in some Gulf nations. It is now very popular in other areas of the Arabian Peninsula. The meaning of Mandi is Dew. It is mildly spiced and the meat ( whether chicken or lamb ) is always moist and covered in the perfect blend of spices.
Now let’s explore its ingredients and method to cook.
- Chicken – 1 kg ( Always use big pieces of chicken or full unit of chicken )
- Basmati Sella Rice – 1/2 kg ( 2 Cups, soaked for 2-3 hours )
Hawaij ( blend of following spices called hawaij )
- Coriander seeds ( Dhania ) – 1 Tbs
- Green Cardamom( Hari Ilaichi) – 1 Tbs ( use with skin )
- Black Peppercorn( Kali mirch) – 2 Tbs
- Cinnamon sticks ( Dal chini) – 3
- Cumin Seeds( Jeera) – 1 Tbs
- Cloves( Laung) – 15-20
Step1.Dry roast all the spices on medium flame till they start releasing aroma ( don’t burn them ), Let these cool for some time and then grind finely.And
Step2.NOW, Add 1 Tsp Turmeric and 1 Tsp Smoked Red Paprika ( you can also use red chilli powder instead of smoked paprika ) to the Ground spices. And Hawaij is ready for Chicken Mandi.
Let’s start MArination of the chicken now,
- Add, 2 tbs of Hawaij
- 1 Lemon juice
- Yellow Food colour ( generous pinch )
- Salt as per your taste
Step3.Add all these into the chicken and Rub the chicken with these spices nicely. Keep it in the fridge to marinate for 3 hours. Also, soak rice in water for 2-3 hours.
The method for Cooking:
Vessel for cooking – heavy bottom pot/any vessel, steam basket, Lid to seal the steam OR use Oven.
Step1.Pour 1 Ltr water in a heavy bottom vessel bring the flame to high, let it start boiling and then put a steam basket over the vessel. And put marinated chicken into he basket.
Step2.Cover with a lid which can seal the steam inside the pot
Step3.Make a soft dough of wheat flour and use that for sealing the lid completely.
Step4.Steam cook the chicken for 15 – 20 minutes.
Tip.Don’t open to check before 15 minutes ( it’s a big NO, NO).
Step5.After 15-20 minutes, open the lid and dish out the chicken
- Keep it aside
- The water which we used to steam cook chicken has the chicken stock inside it now
- Save it, it will be used to cook rice
Now that Chicken is cooked. It’s the time to cook rice.
Ingredients to cook rice
- Small onion – 1 ( finely chopped )
- cumin seeds(Jeera) – 1/2 tsp
- star anise( Badiyan ke phul) – 2
- black peppercorns – 5-6
- cinnamon piece – 2 inch
- Hawaij – 1 Tsp ( same spice mix we used for marination)
- Bay leaves( Tez Patta) – 2 ( small )
- raisins( Kishmish) – 15-20
- Cashews – 10-15
- salt – as per your taste
- Cooking oil – 3-4 Tbs*
- Green chilli ( thick ) ( Bhavanagri mirch) – 1 cut into 1-inch pieces
- Few strands of Saffron
Step1. Add oil to the vessel and add all garam masala ( whole spices )
Step2. When cumin seeds change their colour slightly, add chopped onions.
Step3. Cook onion till they become soft, and add green chilli, raisins, salt.
Step4. One minute after adding raisins, add rice and saute for a minute
Step5. Add water ( for 2 cups of rice use 4 cups of water ). First, add the water used for steam cook chicken if that falls short add normal water to make it to 4 cups.
Step6. Add 1 Tsp of Hawaij to the rice and cook on high flame till water dries out and rice becomes cooked completely. ( Don’t stir the rice, again and again, stir for once or twice only if needed ).
Step7. When Rice is cooked, keep them aside covered with the lid, And start the final step of cooking that is lightly frying the steam cooked chicken in 2 Tbs of oil
Step8. Before serving Chicken Mandi, Add 2 Tbs of oil in a pan and shallow fry the chicken till it gets a nice light red covering.
Step9. Spread the rice in a serving dish and put chicken pieces over it. Serve steaming hot Chicken Mandi with Salad
Note: For step by step cooking video click here —-> Chicken Mandi Recipe
Recipe in English: https://youtu.be/Lp1YPhTZpLg
Recipe in Hindi: https://youtu.be/NHGKRJ-Kpqk