Roast Chicken on Baked Rice with Tomato, Cumin and Bay Leaves

Brining makes for a delicious bird with moist flesh. It’s very simple.

Ingredients for Brining

  • 50g fine salt
  • Large free range chicken
  • Cold water to cover

Combine water with salt until salt dissolves. Cover and stand at room temperature for 2hrs.

Drain and dry with paper towels


Ingredients for baking

  • 1 ½ cups Basmati rice
  • 150g salted butter
  • 1 large white onion, sliced into half moons
  • 5 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 12 cherry tomatoes
  • 3 fresh Bay leaves
  • 1 lemon - rind grated + half for carcass + half juice
  • Salt & Pepper to season



Preheat oven to 200c fan-forced

Put dollop of butter in frying pan and brown chicken on all sides (put aside in a dish)

Add rest of butter in the pan and add onions, garlic & cumin. Soften on a low heat.

Once soft add rice and grated lemon rind plus half the squeezed lemon. Turn up the heat to cook rice slightly and stir until rice is translucent.

Add chicken stock and rest of ingredients (cherry tomatoes, seasoning & bay leaves) and bring to a simmer.

Transfer to large roasting dish and place chicken on top with other half of lemon in chicken cavity

Wipe extra butter on top of chicken to stop sticking to baking paper.

Cover dish with layer of baking paper and then extra layer of tin foil, or lid of dish.

Bake for 40 mins.

Uncover and bake for further 25 mins until golden.

Rest chicken for 5-10mins before carving.

Serve with leafy salad and either yoghurt flavoured with mint and garlic or favourite spicy sauce


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