Chicken Biryani

Do you ever try a new vegetarian recipe and while eating it all you can think is ‘a chicken version of this recipe would be so good?’.

I stripped a veggie biryani back down to basics (Spices & rice) and built it back up with a few of my own additions – tikka paste, chicken stock, chicken, raisins & cashews.

This new recipe is delicious ! So full of flavour and satisfying, we have had it for lunch every day for the past two weeks. It freezes & keeps very well so it’s great to make in bulk.

CBIR

Ingredients –

400g basmati rice.

4 chicken breasts.

1 thumb sized piece of ginger.

4 cardamom pods.

2 cinnamon sticks.

2 bay leaves.

1 1/2 teaspoons tumeric.

2 tbsp medium curry powder.

2 tsp tikka curry paste.

4 garlic cloves.

50g butter.

1 tin light coconut milk.

1.5 litre chicken stock.

60g cashews.

60g raisins.

 

Method –

Peel & mince the garlic & then either grate or finely chop the ginger – skin on the ginger. Saute them both on a medium heat in 1/2 of the butter, along with the cardamom pods, bay leaves and cinnamon sticks, until golden brown. Add in the spices and cook on a low heat for a further two minutes, stirring regularly. Add in 1 tsp of the tikka paste and the cashews, cook for a further 1 minute, and then transfer to a large stock pot.

Dice the chicken in to very small pieces making sure to trim any fat. Cook the chicken pieces in the frying pan using the remaining tikka paste and butter, stirring regularly.

Add the chicken to the spice mix in the stock pot. Add in the rice and raisins and give it a good stir to mix the chicken through. Then add the coconut milk and chicken stock and bring to a boil. Once at boiling point you can reduce to a gentle boil, put the lid on the pan and just leave a small gap in the side of the lid for any steam to escape.

Check regularly by sticking a fork through to the bottom of the pan and checking if any water is left. Once all water is boiled out, take the lid off to cool down and then either serve or pack away in to tupperware for freezing.

This recipe would serve 8 smaller lunch portions, or 4 generous dinner portions.

Make sure to let me know in the comments below if you try the recipe and what you think 🙂

Second time lucky.

***08/02/19***

I’m writing this laid up in bed recovering after having my second surgery on my knee last week.

Let’s rewind..

Last year I had a surgery on my right knee to remove a melanoma. It was sent around to several specialists in Ireland and one specialist in Holland and finally they got back to me and said they all agreed they got it all the first time around, no further surgery needed. Massive sigh of relief ! I can’t even begin to explain the emotions felt at hearing you have Cancer and waiting to find out if it has spread or not. Anxiety, fear, dread, grief, panic, to name a few ! The weight that lifted off my shoulders when I got the call from my Dr to say they got it all the first time around was palpable.

Fast-forward to the end of January..

I then got a call from the hospital only two weeks ago to tell me actually no, your Dr shouldn’t have advised you that and we need to see you again ASAP. I argued blind with the nurse on the phone God bless her.. ‘no you’ve made a mistake my Dr told me you got it all’.. ‘I got the all clear back in December’.. ‘are you sure you have the most up to date records’.. ‘can you check and see if you have the results from all 3 specialists there as they confirmed that it was all gone?’. She had to repeat to me several times that she had my most up to date record and then she advised they recently had a board meeting where they discussed my latest results and the hospital decided that further surgery would be necessary. You couldn’t make this shit up!

I was back in the hospital two days later meeting my oncologist surgeon & discussing my treatment plan. He wanted to take a wider margin from the area and send that off for further testing, no risks being taken here.

1 week later I was in the Vincent Private having my second surgery. It all went well but the surgery was a lot bigger this time and a lot more painful so I’ve been laid up in bed for the past week recovering and keeping my leg elevated.

I was advised to pop back in to the dressing clinic yesterday so they could check the wound as I was worried it wasn’t healing as well as last time. The nurse was so careful with it and told me that it does seem inflamed and it was still bleeding slightly (which it shouldn’t be). Due to the scar being right on the inside of my knee she said I need to be very careful to keep my leg straight and put no pressure on it as bending/pressure can cause it not to heal properly. So that’s me in bed for another few days now before I even think of leaving the house.

To say I’m bored shitless is an understatement. I’m usually so active with work, gym, yoga, walks & cycling. Lying in bed for 8 days straight so far is not going down well but I really do need to make sure this heals well so for a change I’m actually listening to the Drs advice.

On the plus side, I’ve been getting lots of reading done & have finally found the time to stitch missing buttons back on dresses & shirts I have had lying around for a while. Little tiny positives right?

My results should be back next week. I’m staying positive and hoping that my Oncologist was just being very thorough by performing a second surgery but until then… fingers crossed & praying.

Skin-Cancer-Awareness-Photo