Ingredients (Serves 2 – 3)
1. Basmati Rice – 1.5 cup
2. Oil / butter – 2 tbsp
3. Onion – 3/4 cup, finely chopped
Ginger-garlic paste – 1 tsp
4. Tomato – 2 medium, ground
5. Spice powder – 1 – 1.5 tsp (recipe below)
6. Saffron – 1 tiny pinch
Dried lemon – 1
7. Salt – To taste
8. Green chilly / fresh red chilly – 2, slit
9. Water / chicken stock – 3 cups
10. Butter – 1 tbsp
Fried cashews, almonds, raisins – 2 – 3 tbsp each, to garnish
Fried onion – 3 tbsp, To garnish
11. Chicken leg quarters – 3 – 4, skin removed
For the spice powder
12. Turmeric powder – 3/4 tsp
Kashmiri chilly powder – 1 tbsp
Cumin seeds – 2 tsp
Coriander seeds – 2 tbsp
Black pepper corns – 1 tbsp
Green cardamom – 6, cloves – 8, cinnamon stick – 1/2 inch, nutmeg – 1/8 th small
Saffron – 1 tiny pinch
Salt – As required
13. Lemon juice – 1.5 tbsp
Oil – 2 tbsp
Water – 1 tbsp or as required to make a paste
1. Grind all the ingredients numbered 13 to a fine powder. Transfer to a large bowl. Set aside 1.5 tsp to use later. Add salt, 1.5 tbsp lemon juice and 2 tbsp oil to the spice powders. Mix well. Add 1 – 2 tbsp water if required. Taste-check for salt. Make 2 – 3 deep slits on the fleshy part of the chicken so that the marinade can penetrate inside the flesh. Rub the marinade all over the chicken drumsticks one by one. Remember to rub the marinade inside the slits. Put them in the refrigerator for at least 8 hrs or overnight. Take it out 1 hr before baking.
2. Preheat oven to its maximum setting. The maximum temperature that I can set in my oven is 500 F so I baked them at that temperature. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Lightly grease / spray the foil with oil. Arrange the chicken drumsticks on the foil. Brush the chicken with oil or pour/spray little oil on them ( this step is optional). Place the tray in the center rack of the oven. Bake it for about 12 – 15 minutes. Take out the tray carefully using your oven mitts. Turn them over and brush/pour/spray a little oil on the chicken pieces (this is optional). Return the tray to the oven. Bake for another 10 – 12 minutes. Take out the tray when the chicken is done. Be careful not to burn the chicken pieces. Broil for the last 3 – 4 minutes.
3. Meanwhile soak basmati rice for 30 minutes in enough water. Drain the excess water.
4. Heat 2 tbsp oil / butter and add finely chopped onion, ginger-garlic paste and a pinch of salt. Saute until translucent. Add tomato puree and cook for a few minutes. Add 1 tsp spice powder, saffron, dried lemon and mix well. Add water and bring to a boil. Add salt, to taste. The water should be slightly salty. Add drained rice and bring to a boil.Cover and cook for 3 – 4 minutes over medium-high heat. Bring down the heat to low. Again cover and cook at low heat for 5 – 6 minutes until rice is done. Switch off. Open the lid and add a few capsicum pieces, 2 slit green / red chilies and 1 tbsp butter. Place a small bowl inside the middle of the rice. Heat a piece of charcoal on direct flame until it is nicely hot, this will take a few minutes. Once the charcoal is hot, place it in the bowl that is in the rice and pour a tsp of oil/ghee on top. Immediately cover with lid. It gives a nice smoky flavor to the rice.
Immediately cover with the lid and set aside for 10 – 15 minutes. Open the lid and mix gently. To serve – transfer cooked rice to a large platter and place the chicken pieces on top. Enjoy with Salata Hara!
Salata Hara (Arabic Tomato Salsa)
Tomato, ripe – 2 medium, chopped
Cilantro – 3 tbsp, chopped
Green chilly – 1 – 2 (mild or medium spicy, you can remove the seeds inside), chopped
Garlic – 1/2 small, chopped
Lemon juice – 2 – 3 tsp or to taste
Cumin powder – 1 pinch
Salt – To taste
Coarse grind all the above ingredients in the large jar of a mixie. Taste-check for salt and add more lemon juice, if required.