Friday, December 5, 2008

Indonesian Coconut Rice with Chicken Zucchini Recipe

I'm going to give it a shout to my Indonesian root this time. This recipe is very yummy, fragrant, quick and easy. Coconut rice and chicken is the kind of home-cook comfort food we love to eat on daily basis. Usually I don't add the Zucchini if it is not in season. You can also substitute it with carrot or squash ot whatever vegetable that is available that time. But most of the time we I just do it plain rice and chicken only. As you read along the recipe, you might find it that the spices we use are almost the same spices they use in Indian food cooking. That is because Indonesia used to be a Hindu Kingdom with strong influences from India way....way.....long time ago before the Muslims from Gujarat, the Portuguese and the Dutch came to our land. In a way we are a trully melting pot as a country. I got this recipe via Food and Wine magazine. It is my other go-to source for recipe and beautiful food photographies.
Photo by © Melanie Acevedo

2 tablespoons cooking oil
8 chicken thighs
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
1 large onion, cut into thin slices
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 1/2 cups long-grain rice
1 2/3 cups unsweetened coconut milk (one 13-ounce can)
1 3/4 cups water
1 pound zucchini, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/3 cup chopped cilantro (optional)

In a large deep frying pan or Dutch oven, heat the cooking oil over moderately high heat. Sprinkle the chicken with 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper. Put the chicken in the pan and brown well on both sides, about 8 minutes in all. Remove. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat. Reduce the heat to moderately low.
Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute longer. Stir in the coriander, cumin, rice, and the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
Stir in the coconut milk and the water. Add the chicken and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook over low heat, stirring the rice two or three times, until the rice and chicken are almost done, about 20 minutes. Stir in the zucchini, cover, and cook until done, about 7 minutes longer. Stir the lemon juice and cilantro into the rice.

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