Chicken and Vegetable Pullao
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Serves: 6-8 servings
  • 2½ cups rice, washed and soaked for 10 minutes
  • ½ cup red lentils, washed and soaked with rice
  • ½ large onion, chopped fine
  • 2 large zucchini, small cubes
  • 2 large potatoes, small cubes, parboiled or fried
  • 1 chicken breast, cooked and shredded or chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • handful of mint or cilantro, or both
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • salt and pepper to taste (takes about 2 teaspoons salt to season 3 cups rice)
  1. In a big pot on medium high heat, brown the onions.
  2. Once the onions are caramelised, add the zucchini cubes and fry.
  3. Brown the zucchini cubes a little too.
  4. Add the garlic and ginger, cook a little.
  5. Add the cumin, coriander, red chilli powder and turmeric.
  6. Fry the spices a little.
  7. Add the washed and drained rice and lentils and coat with the oil and spices.
  8. Once the rice and lentils are coated nicely with the spices and oil, add the chicken broth and bring to a boil.
  9. Once boiling, turn the heat to medium and simmer until most of the broth has been absorbed.
  10. Do not boil till totally dry, there should be about ½ inch of liquid still in the pot above the rice.
  11. Add the fried or parboiled potatoes and the shredded chicken.
  12. Cover with a tight fitting lid and cook on low, for 10 minutes.
  13. Put on a timer.
  14. After 10 minutes on low heat, turn off the burner and remove pot from heat.
  15. Without opening, steam for another 10 minutes. Set a timer.
  16. After 10 minutes, remove lid and fluff rice and lentils with a fork and mix in the vegetables.
The ingredients are all open to change, the type and quantity. I like to boil or fry my potatoes before hand otherwise they tend to make the rice too gummy. You can use any meat, I had a leftover cooked chicken breast and so I shredded that into the pullao. In a pullao with stuff in it, I usually use double the liquid to rice ratio. The other vegetables in the pullao will absorb a little of the liquid and you want to ensure there is enough to cook the rice and lentils. However, after the simmering of the rice and lentils, they still look too under done, add a little more liquid. The grains should lengthen in size and look half way done when they are done simmering.
Recipe by Coffee and Crumpets at