Chicken Quinoa Biryani

Cook Time 1hr

Servings 6


2 tablespoon sweet paprika
1 tablespoon each coriander seeds and cumin seeds
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
2 teaspoon ground turmeric
½ teaspoon ground chili powder
3 cardamom pods
2 cloves coarsely broken
½ cinnamon quill
½ teaspoon finely grated nutmeg
3 star anise
3 fresh bay leaves
3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
2 teaspoon coarsely grated ginger
2 tablespoons ghee
400g plain yoghurt
Spanish onion, thinly sliced
250g quinoa
½ cup each coarsely chopped mint and coriander
1 long green chilli finely chopped
1 kg skinless chicken thigh on the bone
Coriander and lemon wedges


In a large saucepan dry roast the spices paprika, peppercorns, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, turmeric, chilli powder, cardamom pods, red chillies, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, star anise and bay leaves until fragrant and toasted about 2-3 minutes. In a spice grinder or mortar and pestle finely grind into a powder.

Mash garlic and ginger with a mortar and pestle, add some water to make sure it loosens into a smooth paste and set aside.

Heat ghee in a saucepan over medium heat, add onion and stir occasionally, until golden (6-8 minutes).

Transfer the onion to a large bowl, mint, coriander, green chilli, spice mix and ginger-garlic paste, season with sea salt and mix to combine.

Add chicken and yoghurt, coat well in the marinade, then cover and refrigerate overnight to marinate.

In a saucepan add quinoa and boil in lightly salted water (around 2 cups) until soft, add more water if required if it dries out.

In a large saucepan or casserole dish spread the chicken and marinade in an even layer, cover with foil then a lid, and cook over low heat until chicken is cooked through (45 minutes to 1 hour).

Remove from heat, shred meat from bones and return meat back to saucepan, combine with the quinoa and sauce and cook for a further 5mins to warm it up and mix through the flavours.

Serve hot scattered with fresh coriander, with lemon wedges for squeezing.


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