Chicken Kofta and Rice Broth

Just as every Jewish mamma has her own version of chicken soup, so every Muslim mamma has her own take on this nourishing dish.

The use of dill comes from Persian/Afghani influences while the spices give it an Indian twist. The koftas are highly seasoned, which gives a warming sensation to the chest. A light and delicate broth, this becomes, with the addition of rice and carrots, a meal in itself.

  • 300 g (10 oz) Chicken Breast skinned
  • 3 Garlic Cloves coarsely chopped
  • 5 cm (2 inch) piece Fresh Ginger coarsely chopped
  • 1 small bunch Coriander roughly chopped
  • 1 small bunch Dill roughly chopped
  • 1-2 Green Chillies chopped
  • 1 tsp Garam Masala
  • Salt

For the Broth

  • 50 g (2 oz) Butter
  • 1 medium Carrot cut into julienne strips
  • 1 Clove Garlic crushed to a fine paste with a dash of salt
  • 3 x 2.5 cm (1 inch) Cinnamon Sticks
  • 3 Cardamom Pods
  • 5 Black Peppercorns
  • 3 Bay Leaves
  • 60 g (2.25 oz) Basmati Rice washed and left to soak for 30 minutes
  • 1 Tomato de-seeded, diced and lightly salted

Serves 4

Place the chicken in a food processor, along with the garlic, ginger, green chillies, garam masala and salt, to taste, together with the coriander and dill, leaving approximately 1 tbsp of each of the herbs for garnish. Process to a fine mince, combining all the ingredients thoroughly. Shape the mixture into balls into koftas the size of a ping-pong ball and set aside.

Melt the butter into a large saucepan. Add the garlic and carrot and allow them to sweat for a couple of minutes before adding cinnamon, cardamom, peppercorns and bay leaves. Pour on 500 ml (18 fl oz) water and bring to the boil. Gently place the kofta balls in the liquid, lower the heat and simmer for approximately 5 minutes. Drain the rice and add it to the pan and continue to cook. When the rice and koftas are nearly ready, add the diced tomato and garnish with the remaining chopped dill and coriander.

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