Curried Chicken & Rice

Thursday 10 June 2021

Curried Chicken & Rice 
One thing which I really fell in love with when I was living in the UK was Asian flavors, especially curries. I had experienced curry many years before when I lived on the BATUS base in Suffield, Alberta.  This was the British Army Training Unit Services base in Canada.

We had lots of British friends there and it was my friend Cathy Giles who had introduced me to curried chicken.  The British love their curries. I was not sure if it was something I would like as I had never eaten anything like it before.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin 
I remember watching her make it and she dumped a whole spice jar of curry powder into it. (This was looking scary!) I had nothing to fear however, as it was delicious. I fell in love with it at first bite and have been loving it every since.

In the UK, I got to stretch my palate for curry and to try many Asian dishes.  I fell in love with everything I tasted.   Pakora, Naan, Dhal, Tikka, Korma, etc.  I especially loved the onion Bhaji, as naughty as they were. 

I belonged to an International Woman's Group and on one of my first meetings, the hostess was Indian and made Bhaji as a treat. Oh boy, so yummy.

Milk Street Tuesday Nights

One of the first cookbooks I purchased when arriving back in Canada was this one by Christopher Kimball. Milk Street Tuesday Nights.  I was familiar with Christopher Kimball from having watched him on America's Test Kitchen on PBS prior to my going over to the UK.

I was not familiar with the show Milk Street, but upon perusing the recipe index of the book, taking Mr. Kimball's reputation into consideration and then allowing for the fact that it had won a James Beard award, I decided to go for it!!

Curried Chicken & Rice 
A take on the Asian Biryani, it ticked all of my boxes. Basmati rice. Tick. Chicken. Tick.  A homemade curry paste. Tick The flavors of coconut. Tick.  Cardamom. Tick.

There was nothing in it that I did not like.  Dried cranberries?  Double tick!!

I knew it would be savory, spicy and a tad bit sweet.  I was in. ALL in!!

Curried Chicken & Rice 
It does use fresh coriander, which I know some people are not fond of.  I am not one of those, but if you are, there is an easy substitute you can use.

Fresh Thai basil is very close in flavor to this love it or loathe it soft herb. You can also use flat leaf parsley.  Both, whilst not giving you exactly the same taste, will be close enough!  Parsley is a tad bit more bitter, so don't use quite as much.

Curried Chicken & Rice 

I love making my own curry pastes.  This is something I learnt to do at culinary college. Its an easy thing to do and really adds a greater depth of flavor to your curry dishes. 

This one is made with a bit of oil, some finely grated fresh gingerroot, curry powder, salt and pepper.   Nothing too out of the ordinary. I used a medium curry powder.

Curried Chicken & Rice 
I adore Basmati rice.  It is my favorite of all the rices. Basmati is a slender type of rice which is grown in India and Pakistan and it a rice they use most of all in their dishes. You may be familiar with the Tilda brand of Basmati rice.

It has a very distinctive smell when it is cooking. I think it smells very similar to Popcorn. In fact the word "basmati" in Hindi means "full or aroma" or "fragrant."  It is also called the Queen of perfumed rice.

Curried Chicken & Rice 
The rice gets an initial cooking in some coconut water along with some of the curry paste that you make.  While it is cooking, you marinate diced chicken thigh meat along with the rest of the curry paste.

I love shallots.  They are like a milder, sweeter onion, and add a lovely flavor to the dishes they are cooked in. Typically they are much more expensive than onions. They have a subtle, delicate taste. You can use round shallots or banana shallots in this.

Curried Chicken & Rice 
What can I say about chicken thighs?  They are like the filet mignon of the chicken world.  Tender and juicy and filled with flavor.  They are from one of the hardest working parts of the yard bird. 

I love them in dishes like this where they add tons of flavor.  You could of course use breast meat, but I think the thighs give a lovely taste and texture to the dish, not dry in the least.

Curried Chicken & Rice

Coconut water, lighter and fresher than coconut milk. It is made from the clear liquid found inside immature coconuts.

Translucent and semi-clear it is not the same as coconut milk. Don't make that mistake. You will not get the same results. Coconut water is also very good for you, high in nutrients and lower in fat than coconut milk.

You get the flavor of the coconut, without the fat.

Curried Chicken & Rice 
It adds a nice touch of richness as well as a savory sweet flavor that works perfectly with the flavors of curry powder and cardamom.

Don't get me started on cardamom. I quite simply adore it, in both savory and sweet dishes.  It also goes very well with the flavor of cranberries, which lets face it . . .  go perfectly with chicken and are perfect in this dish, adding a sweet touch of fruitiness that is oh so tasty!

Curried Chicken & Rice

Although I have not mentioned it in the recipe, I did add a smattering of broken salted cashew nuts over top of the finished dish.  I love cashews and they are a favorite addition to many Indian dishes. I thought they would work well here and I was quite simply right.

If you are looking for a delicious weeknight supper that won't take you ages to cook, but will taste like it did, you cannot go wrong with this delicious curry dish.  Its perfectly beautiful and incredibly tasty, but then again, I would expect nothing less from Christopher Kimball.

If you are looking to add a cookbook to your collection, I cannot recommend this tasty book highly enough.  I say go for it! You won't be sorry.

Curried Chicken & Rice

Curried Chicken & Rice

Yield: 2
Author: Marie Rayner
Cook time: 45 MinTotal time: 45 Min
This is a delicious take on a South Asian Biryani, which I adapted from Milk Street Kitchen to serve only two people. Its simply delicious.


  • 1 1/2 TBS light olive oil
  • 1 TBS finely grated peeled fresh gingerroot (I use my microplane)
  • 1/2 TBS medium curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
  • fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3/4 cup (160g) Basmati rice, rinsed and drained 
  • 1 1/4 cups (360ml) coconut water, divided
  • 2 large shallots, peeled, halved and sliced in thin half moons
  • 1/4 cup (40g) chopped dried cranberries
  • 1 TBS fresh lime juice
  • a couple very large handfuls of fresh coriander leaf, (cilantro) roughly chopped (about 1 1/4 cups)


  1. Begin by making the curry paste. Mix the grated ginger together in a bowl with 1/2 TBS of the oil, the curry powder, ground cardamom, 1 1/4 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp black pepper to form a thick paste. Remove 1/2 TBS of this to a saucepan and then mix the remainder into the cut up chicken, stirring it to coat it well. Set aside to marinate while you cook the rice.
  2. Put the rinsed rise and all but 3/8 (3 ounces) of the coconut milk into the saucepan you had put the curry paste into. Stir well, then bring to a simmer.  Cover and cook over medium heat until almost tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat, fluff and set aside.
  3. Heat the remaining 1 TBS of oil in a large skillet. Add the shallots. Cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and then push them to the side of the skillet. 
  4. Add the chicken pieces to the skillet in a single layer. Cook without stirring until they turn golden brown on the bottom surface, then flip them over, stirring to scrape up any brown bits.  Stir the shallots into the chicken along with 1 ounce of the coconut water. Cook, stirring constantly, until all of the liquid has evaporated.
  5. Flake the rice into the skillet along with the remaining coconut water and the cranberries.  Stir in well, then press flat and cook, undisturbed for about 3 minutes over medium high heat, until the rice has started to brown and crisp a bit. 
  6. Remove from the heat. Stir in the lime juice and 1 cup of the coriander leaf, stirring any crisped rice into the mixture. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 
  7. Transfer to a serving bowl, scatter with the remaining coriander and serve immediately.
Did you make this recipe?
Tag @marierayner5530 on instagram and hashtag it #marierayner5530
Created using The Recipes Generator
Curried Chicken & Rice
This content (written and photography) is the sole property of The English Kitchen. Any reposting or misuse is not permitted. If you are reading this elsewhere, please know that it is stolen content and you may report it to me at: 


  1. This looks so good, Marie. And I've always loved chicken thighs over the breasts. My favourite Milk Strreet recipe from Tuesday Night is their Creamy Fennel and White Bean soup. I've made it several times. I'll be sure to make this, too. It's supposed to be cooler today. Sure hope so. Have a grand day. Love and hugs, Elaine

    1. Oh, I need to try that soup! Its a lot cooler here today. I think there was a touch of frost on the roof. Feast and famine! Love and hugs, xoxo

  2. I love a good curry as well and it's something I miss from home. We had great Indian take away places, but here that cuisine id virtually unknown. I like that this is an all in one dish, with rice, chicken and curry combined. I love the addition of cranberries - both for the flavour as well as that lovely pop of colour. Definitely one to try.

    1. Its virtually unknown here as well Marie! Not very common at all. If a person wanted to make a successful living I think they could open up a curry house. It would be very popular! I hope you will try this for sure! xoxo

  3. I made this last night and it was SO GOOD! I had to use low fat coconut milk diluted 50% with water because I didn't have coconut water. No matter, it was still delicious. This recipe is going on my list of best quarantine meals, along with several more from your blog. Thanks Marie, hope all is well in your new Canadian kitchen!

    1. I am so pleased you made this Madrona, and also happy to know that you can use diluted low fat coconut milk! Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience with us. All is well here. I am keeping on keeping on! xoxo


Thanks for stopping by. I love to hear from you so do not be shy!

Did you make the recipe as directed? Recipe results are not guaranteed when changes have been made.

Is this comment helpful to other readers? Rude or hateful comments will not be approved. Remember that this website is run by a real person.

Are you here to complain about ads? Please keep in mind that I develop these recipes and provide them to you for free. Advertising helps to defray my cost of doing so, and allows me to continue to post regular fresh content.

Thanks so much for your understanding! I appreciate you!