This tasty Chicken Mandi combines an amazingly flavorful roasted marinated chicken with smoky rice that is an unbelievable treat for dinner! Your whole family is sure to love this popular Arabic chicken meal with its intensely flavorful rice and perfectly cooked chicken!
In a small bowl combine the ground spices including cumin, green cardamom, black pepper, coriander, turmeric, ginger, and nutmeg.
If using whole spices: lightly roast the whole spices in a small dry frying pan for 2-3 minutes or until fragrant. Remove from heat and allow the spices to cool slightly. Then transfer to a spice grinder and grind until the spices reach a fine powder consistency.
Chicken Mandi Marinade
In a small bowl combine the olive oil, melted butter, lime juice, and a portion of the mandi spice.
Coat your whole chicken, spatchcock chicken, halved chicken (remove the neck if you cut the chicken in half), or chicken pieces with the marinade thoroughly.
Cover, refrigerate, and marinate the coated chicken for at least one hour, and preferably overnight (or 8 hours). *Remember to place the marinated chicken out before cooking for about 30 minutes to allow it to come to room temperature.
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F (205 degrees C) and line a baking tray or sheet with parchment paper.
Roast the chicken for 40-45 minutes (check earlier if roasting chicken pieces, or cook longer for a whole chicken) or until the internal temperature is 180 degrees F (82 degrees C) as read by a digital meat thermometer. Remove from oven when done.
Heat a large pan or Dutch oven with the olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced onion and saute for 2-3 minutes, until fragrant and becoming translucent. Add the crushed garlic cloves and saute for an additional 30 seconds.
Add the diced green chiles, garlic ginger paste, mandi spice blend, bay leaves, and cinnamon stick. Continue to saute for 2-3 minutes.
Add the soaked and rinsed rice and fry with the sauteed diced onion, green chiles, and spices. Stir continuously for 10 minutes.
Pour in the chicken broth, stir, cover with aluminum foil and your pot or Dutch oven lid. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 10-15 minutes. *If the rice still has water after 10 minutes, cook for an additional 5 minutes.
Once the rice is cooked, fluff the rice.
Place a single barbecue charcoal briquette on your gas stove ring (or under a broiler on high) for about 5 minutes or until red hot.
Make a double-layer pouch or bowl of aluminum foil that is lightly coated with cooking oil. Place the red hot coal into the pouch and nestle it into the center of the rice.
Place the chicken over the rice and charcoal, then seal the pot with a sheet of aluminum foil again and seal with the lid. Leave the pot sealed for at least 10 minutes.
Open the pot just before serving, carve the chicken pieces if needed, and serve over the smoky rice.