Spicy chickpea rice “kedreh”

Kedreh in arabic means a small clay pot and this recipe takes on the name because it is traditionally cooked in those small clay pots in a wood oven.

The recipe can be made with chicken or meat..what really makes it special is the spices used in it and the fact that you use the water you cooked the chickpeas in to cook the meat in and then it is used to cook the rice giving the final dish layers of flavor. Having said that, you can make this with chickpeas from a can but you would really be missing out on a lot of the flavor. Chickpeas cooked at home taste way better that anything from a can and using the cooking water in this recipe infuses the meat and rice with more flavor.

Traditionally this recipe is made with loads of garlic. Up to 2 whole heads of garlic in a pot but I usually scale that down to 4 or 5 cloves.

You can also make this into a vegetarian recipe by omitting the meat all together, you will still get loads of flavor from the chickpeas spice combination.

1 cup chickpeas

1 1/2 cups short grain  rice

1 onion chopped

4-5 peeled cloves garlic whole

250 grams beef cut into cubes (any cut you like)

water (or the water you cooked the chickpeas in)

2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon turmeric

1 teaspoon all spice

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon cardamom

1 teaspoon cumin.

olive oil

In a pot , heat the olive oil add the meat and stir 4-5 minutes.

Add the spices except for the turmeric

Add 4 cups of water  and bring to a boil, cook untill the meat is done.

In another pot add a little olive oil, saute the onions and then add the rice, garlic cloves and the chickpeas followed by the turmeric

Add 3 cups of the meat broth along with the pieces of meat

Bring to a boil over medium heat then lower the heat and cover the pot.

Leave it on a low flame untill the rice absorbs all the water, turn off the heat and allow to stand for at least 10 minutes (I some times leave it up to 1 hour)

When you are ready to serve it,fluff the rice with a fork and serve it with a salad or some greek yogurt.