Persian-Style Chicken & Crispy Rice with Zucchini, Currants & Lemon Aioli

Persian-Style Chicken & Crispy Rice

with Zucchini, Currants & Lemon Aioli

40 MIN
2 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

For Persian-inspired flavor, we’re coating bites of chicken with warming spices like cumin and coriander, then cooking it alongside tender zucchini, onion, and crunchy almonds. We’re serving it over a hearty bed of rice—half of which we’re crisping in the oven after cooking to create delicious layers of contrasting texture.
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  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    890 Cals (est.)
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fresh
ingredients
Persian-Style Chicken & Crispy Rice with Zucchini, Currants & Lemon Aioli
Title
  • 10 oz Chopped Chicken Breast
  • ½ cup Long Grain White Rice
  • 1 Zucchini
  • 1 Lemon
  • 2 Tbsps Dried Currants
  • 2 Tbsps Sliced Roasted Almonds
  • ¼ cup Mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp Shawarma Spice Blend (Ground Coriander, Cumin Seeds, Garlic Powder, Smoked Sweet Paprika & Ground Turmeric)
  • 1 Sweet Onion
time-saving
tips & techniques
Cook the rice
1 Cook the rice

Place an oven rack in the center of the oven; preheat to 450°F. In a medium pot, combine the rice, a big pinch of salt, and 1 cup of water. Heat to boiling on high. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low. Cover and cook, without stirring, 13 to 15 minutes, or until the water has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Turn off the heat and fluff with a fork. Transfer half the cooked rice to a sheet pan; spread into an even layer. Set the remaining cooked rice aside and cover to keep warm.

Prepare the ingredients
2 Prepare the ingredients

Meanwhile, wash and dry the fresh produce. Halve, peel, and thinly slice the onion. Quarter the zucchini lengthwise; cut crosswise into ¼-inch pieces. Roughly chop the almonds. Using a zester or the small side of a box grater, zest the lemon to get 1 teaspoon. Quarter and deseed the lemon. Combine the currants and the juice of 2 lemon wedges in a bowl.

Cook the chicken
3 Cook the chicken

Pat the chicken dry with paper towels; place in a bowl. Season with salt, pepper, and enough of the spice blend to coat (you may have extra). Toss to coat. In a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the seasoned chicken in an even layer. Cook, without stirring, 3 to 4 minutes, or until lightly browned. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, 3 to 4 minutes, or until browned and cooked through. Leaving any browned bits (or fond) in the pan, transfer to a plate.

Cook the vegetables & finish the chicken
4 Cook the vegetables & finish the chicken

In the pan of reserved fond, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the sliced onion; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 5 to 6 minutes, or until lightly browned and slightly softened. Add the zucchini pieces; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 3 to 4 minutes, or until softened. Add the cooked chicken and chopped almonds; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until thoroughly combined. Turn off the heat.

Crisp & finish the rice
5 Crisp & finish the rice

Meanwhile, drizzle the sheet pan of cooked rice with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Crisp in the oven, stirring halfway through, 7 to 9 minutes, or until lightly browned and crispy. Remove from the oven and let stand at least 2 minutes. Carefully transfer back to the pot of remaining cooked rice. Stir in the dressed currants (including any liquid). Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired.

Make the lemon aioli & serve your dish
6 Make the lemon aioli & serve your dish

Meanwhile, in a bowl, whisk together the lemon zest, mayo, the juice of the remaining lemon wedges, and 1 teaspoon of water. Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve the finished rice topped with the finished chicken and vegetables and lemon aioli. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

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Cook the rice
1 Cook the rice

Place an oven rack in the center of the oven; preheat to 450°F. In a medium pot, combine the rice, a big pinch of salt, and 1 cup of water. Heat to boiling on high. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low. Cover and cook, without stirring, 13 to 15 minutes, or until the water has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Turn off the heat and fluff with a fork. Transfer half the cooked rice to a sheet pan; spread into an even layer. Set the remaining cooked rice aside and cover to keep warm.

2 Prepare the ingredients

Meanwhile, wash and dry the fresh produce. Halve, peel, and thinly slice the onion. Quarter the zucchini lengthwise; cut crosswise into ¼-inch pieces. Roughly chop the almonds. Using a zester or the small side of a box grater, zest the lemon to get 1 teaspoon. Quarter and deseed the lemon. Combine the currants and the juice of 2 lemon wedges in a bowl.

Prepare the ingredients
Cook the chicken
3 Cook the chicken

Pat the chicken dry with paper towels; place in a bowl. Season with salt, pepper, and enough of the spice blend to coat (you may have extra). Toss to coat. In a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the seasoned chicken in an even layer. Cook, without stirring, 3 to 4 minutes, or until lightly browned. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, 3 to 4 minutes, or until browned and cooked through. Leaving any browned bits (or fond) in the pan, transfer to a plate.

4 Cook the vegetables & finish the chicken

In the pan of reserved fond, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the sliced onion; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 5 to 6 minutes, or until lightly browned and slightly softened. Add the zucchini pieces; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 3 to 4 minutes, or until softened. Add the cooked chicken and chopped almonds; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until thoroughly combined. Turn off the heat.

Cook the vegetables & finish the chicken
Crisp & finish the rice
5 Crisp & finish the rice

Meanwhile, drizzle the sheet pan of cooked rice with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Crisp in the oven, stirring halfway through, 7 to 9 minutes, or until lightly browned and crispy. Remove from the oven and let stand at least 2 minutes. Carefully transfer back to the pot of remaining cooked rice. Stir in the dressed currants (including any liquid). Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired.

6 Make the lemon aioli & serve your dish

Meanwhile, in a bowl, whisk together the lemon zest, mayo, the juice of the remaining lemon wedges, and 1 teaspoon of water. Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve the finished rice topped with the finished chicken and vegetables and lemon aioli. Enjoy!

Make the lemon aioli & serve your dish