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For a showstopping dinner your whole family will love, try this gloriously aromatic dish of rice, chicken, potatoes and spices, usually reserved for Sunday lunches and special occasions such as Eid.
- 1 kg chicken pieces
- 1 cup basmati or long grain rice
- 75 ml (5 tbsp) butter
- 15 ml (1 tbsp) vegetable oil
- 1 large onion finely chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- 5 ml (1 tsp) cumin seeds
- 2 pieces cinnamon stick
- 4 cardamom pods
- 5 cloves
- 10 Robertsons peppercorns
- 2 tsp Rajah mild masala curry powder
- 2 tsp Robertsons chilli powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- ¼ tsp Robertsons turmeric
- 1½ tsp garam masala
- 15 ml (1 tbsp) ginger/garlic paste
- 2 large tomatoes skin removed and blended
- 2 tsp tomato paste
- 3 potatoes quartered
- handful mint leaves
- handful fresh coriander
- 500 ml (2 cups) water
- 2 ml salt to taste
- Peel potatoes and cut them into four pieces or smaller if you prefer. Add a few tablespoons of water, cover and steam for 5 minutes in the microwave or boil for 10min and set aside
- Heat 2 tablespoon butter and 1 tablespoon oil in a large pot. Add the cumin seeds, cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods, clove, bay leaf, peppercorns, and fry until fragrant. Add the onion and fry until golden brown and caramelized
- Add the ginger/garlic paste and fry for a minute. Add the masala, turmeric, chilli powder, cumin, coriander, garam masala and fry for 2 minutes. Add the chicken and mix well. Leave the pot open and allow it to fry for 10 minutes on low heat. Add a few drops of water only if required
- Add tomatoes and tomato paste. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celsius
- Add the rice, potatoes, coriander, and mint. Add 2 cups water or less, depending on how soon your potatoes will be able to cook.
- Cover and cook in the oven for an hour or less, until potatoes and rice is cooked. Halfway through cooking cut up the butter into little cubes and place it in the pot. When cooked the Akhni should remain a little moist but not mushy.
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