It's A Paleo Chicken Biryani Recipe

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Paleo cooking has never been so easy! In One-Pot Paleo, Jenny Castaneda shares delicious recipes for enticing paleo meals that require only one pot, pan or bowl. That means more tasty, filling Paleo meals without the mess. You'll spend less time cooking and cleaning and more time enjoying your meals. With an awesome collection of herbs and spices that do most of the work for you, you might feel like this flavorful chicken biryani almost cooks itself!

Don't be intimidated by the long list of ingredients in this biryani recipe. Most of the ingredients are the herbs and spices that pack this dish with so much flavor. My Indian classmates from grad school shared their recipes with me, giving me an idea of complementary flavors, and my very own biryani recipe was born! This recipe requires marinating the chicken overnight, so it's best prepared the night before you plan to cook it. Once that's done, all you need to do is sauté the herbs and throw everything together. I've also included a refreshing cucumber mint sauce that goes well with the biryani, but you can easily omit it if you wish.

A bonus? This recipe also includes quick recipes for coconut milk and chicken-bone broth, which are two great pantry staples for paleo (or pretty much any) cooking. It only takes 2 ingredients and a few minutes to make this preservative-free coconut milk, and less than an hour to make this chicken-bone broth in a pressure cooker. I am never without bone broth in my freezer because store-bought doesn't even come close!

Reprinted with permission from One-Pot Paleo

It's A Paleo Chicken Biryani Recipe
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  • 2 cups hot water
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 pound chicken necks or feet
  • 1 pound chicken backs
  • 1 onion
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 rib celery
  • 1 teaspoon whole peppercorns
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • water
  • large glass jar
  • 1 cup coconut cream
  • 1 medium cucumber
  • 10 leaves fresh mint
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 1 cup coconut milk (see recipe below)
  • 3/4 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon garlic
  • 1 tablespoon ginger
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 pound boneless and skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 cups basmati rice
  • 4 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons ghee
  • 1/2 cup shallots
  • 1 tablespoon ginger
  • 1 tablespoon garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • pinch of red-pepper flakes
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 jalapeños
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken-bone broth (see recipe below)
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • 1/4 cup cashew nuts
  1. Combine the hot water and coconut flakes in a high-speed blender. Cover and blend on medium-high for 1 minute.
  2. Cool for 10 minutes and strain using a nut milk bag or cheesecloth.
  3. Pour into a glass jar and cover tightly. Store in the fridge for up to 4 days.
  4. Place all of the ingredients in a pressure cooker. Add enough water to cover the top of the bones. Secure the lid and let it boil on medium-high heat.
  5. Once the pressure cooker starts to whistle, reduce the heat to medium-low and set the timer for 35 minutes. Turn off the heat and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes to naturally release the pressure.
  6. Once it is cool enough to handle, place a sieve on top of a glass jar and pour the broth in it. Cover tightly and keep in the fridge or freezer.
  7. Combine the chicken marinade ingredients in a bowl. Add the chicken pieces and mix. Cover and place in the fridge to marinate overnight for maximum flavor. 
  8. Prepare the cucumber mint sauce by combining the coconut cream, cucumber, mint leaves and sea salt in a bowl. Cover and place in the fridge overnight.
  9. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Soak the basmati rice in water for 30 minutes.
  10. Melt ghee in a braiser or Dutch-oven pan over medium heat. Add the shallots, ginger and garlic and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the turmeric, coriander, cumin seeds, sea salt, red-pepper flakes, cinammon sticks and jalapeños. Sauté until fragrant, about 5 minutes.
  11. Add the chicken pieces and marinade to the pan. Cook the chicken for 3 minutes on each side. Add the basmati rice and mix until everything is combined. Pour in the broth and bring to a simmer. Turn off the heat, cover and move the pan to the oven to cook for 30 minutes.
  12. At the 15-minute mark, check the rice and mix it while scraping the bottom to make sure the rice does not stick to the pan.
  13. After 30 minutes, remove the dish from the oven and uncover. Add the cilantro and cashews on top. Serve with the cucumber mint sauce on the side.
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