Cooking InstructionsDownload PDF
Steep 2-3 pinches of saffron in 4 tbsp of hot water overnight, or for at least 2 hours.
Soak the rice in water for at least 30 minutes.
Prepare the hawaij spice mix by placing the fine cumin, turmeric, white pepper, fine coriander, ground cloves (or allspice) and ground cardamon in a bowl and mixing it thoroughly. Store in an airtight jar.
To make the marinade, combine the 2 tbsp of oil, lemon zest and juice of one lemon, 2 tbsp of the hawaij spice and ½ tsp of salt. Rub the mix all over the chicken and refrigerate overnight or at least for an hour.
To make the rice, add the remaining 2 tbsp of oil to a large saucepan and sauté the onion until translucent. Drain the rice and add it to the onion along with the cloves, cardamom pods, peppercorns, cinnamon stick, bay leaves, raisins, 2-3 chillies, 750ml of water and 1 tsp of salt to taste. Cover and cook for 10 minutes, or until all the water is absorbed. Turn off the heat and allow to stand.
Remove the chicken from the fridge and bring to room temperature.
Prepare a barbecue. When the coals are medium hot, place the chicken, skin-side down on the grid and cook for 35-40 minutes, turning every 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, cover with foil and allow to rest for 10 minutes.
In the meantime prepare the chopped zhoug salad. Roughly chop the tomatoes and grate the garlic. Deseed and finely slice 1-2 chillies. Toast the cumin seeds. Juice half a lemon. Finely chop the fresh coriander, mint and parsley together. Combine all the salad ingredients and season well.
Fluff the rice with a fork and pile onto a platter.
Place the grilled chicken on top, pouring any juices over the rice.
Toast the almonds and scatter over the chicken.
Serve with the chopped zhoug salad and yoghurt on the side.