Thursday, 7 November 2013



On my recent visit to Jordan, I was invited out to quite a number of family and friends and what stood out to me as the main dishes of choice there was the Oozy and Mansaf. I have to say, it is not the first time I've tasted these, but reminded my how much I had missed it.  The beauty of these dishes is that they are so easy, yet so full of flavour. 

  • 1 chicken, cut up
  • chicken stock, enough to cover the chicken
  • 1 large chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom powder
  • 1 tablespoon turmeric powder
  • 1 1/4 cups frozen peas
  • 1 1/4 cups carrots (frozen or fresh, diced small)
  • 1 1/2 lbs ground beef
  • 2 cups long grain rice
  • 1/4 cup almonds
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts (optional)
  • parsley or coriander for garnish
  • seasoned salt
  • 1/2 of a lemon
  • salt

Place the cut up chicken in a pot along with enough chicken stock to cover the chicken. Add just a dash of salt. Skim the top of the stock and remove the froth as it forms. Once all the froth is gone, add the diced onion and let boil for about ten minutes. Add the Arabic seven spice to the stock, along with the cumin and turmeric powder. Let boil for another 5 minutes, then add the peas and carrots. Let boil for another 15-20 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked.
Remove the chicken and place on a baking pan, and place aside. Brown the ground beef in a frying pan, and add just a dash of salt and 1 tsp arabic seven spice.Brown almonds, and add to the ground beef.In a pot big enough to hold the ingredients, place the minced beef on the bottom of the pot. The strain the peas, carrots, and onions out of the chicken stock and place on top of the ground beef, making a second layer (do not mix them in the pot). Then add the rice on top of the peas and carrots. Add enough of the chicken stock from the first pot to cover the rice, peas and carrots, and ground beef (add slowly, trying not to mix everything up).Cover and let cook until the stock is gone and the rice is cooked.
Brown the pine nuts and almonds
Take a serving tray bigger than the pot used to cook the rice in and place it on top of the pot. With one hand on top of the tray and one on the bottom of the pot, flip the pot upside down on top of the tray. Tap the bottom of the pot making sure all the ingredients came down. Remove the pot and shake the tray a little making everything spread out nicely.
Arrange the chicken on top of the rice, then sprinkle the pine nuts, almonds and chopped fresh parsley or coriander for garnish. 

Squeeze the half of lemon on top of the chicken, just adding a hint of flavour and sprinkle seasoned salt over the chicken. Place under the broiler just until it is golden brown.

Serve with a nice fresh salad and some plain yogurt.

voila.... the Oozy

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