Chicken casserole pieces to be marinated in:
* cooking oil
* ginger garlic paste
* cumin powder
* coriander powder
* garam masala powder
* turmeric powder
* chilli powder
* cinnamon stick
* cardamom pods
* chopped fresh coriander leaves
* chopped fresh mint leaves
* chopped fresh green chillies
* whole black pepper seeds
* fried shallots
Be generous with the amounts. Marinade for at least a couple of hours.
Basmati rice – soak in water until soft. Test: Hold a grain between forefinger and thumb and press with thumbnail. If grain breaks easily, it’s done.
* cashew nuts
* saffron water (Confession: Sometimes I use imitation saffron.)
In a large pot, bring water to boil. Add cooking oil, salt and cumin seeds. Add rice to pot.
Meanwhile, heat up a deep, thick-based pan (I usually use my wok). Add a bit of oil and coat the pan well. Add marinated chicken casserole pieces.
Over high heat, stir chicken pieces.
When the rice is dancing away in the pot, it is time to drain the rice.
Even out the chicken pieces over the bottom of the pan and pour the rice over the chicken. Spread out the rice evenly. Scatter extra chopped coriander leaves, mint leaves and fried shallots over the rice. Drizzle saffron water over the rice.
Turn the heat to low, cover and just let it sit for at least forty minutes.
When the time is up, uncover and stir to combine.
Garnish with extra coriander leaves, fried shallots, cashew nuts, raisins. I put the cashew nuts and raisins at the end (individually served) because not everyone in my family likes them. You can put them in earlier if you wish.