Meat Pilaf - Russian Plov

Plov is a rice pilaf with meat, carrots, onions and spices. The traditional recipe comes from Uzbekistan but there is no family in Russia and Ukraine who didn't adopt the recipe and make their own version of it. It’s delicious, with juicy and tender bits of meat, fluffy and flavorful rice, vegetables and spices. It’s an easy to make recipe that uses basic ingredients, great after reheat and all in all is a great one pot dish.

Ingredients

800 gr chicken, pork or beef
7 tbsp. oil for frying
2 medium onions, chopped
2 carrots, grated on large
5 cups rice, long grain (I use Basmati rice)
1 whole garlic
1 tsp. cumin powder
1 tsp. Thyme
Salt, pepper to taste

Directions

The traditional meat pilaf is cooked in a cast iron Dutch oven, but it's ok if you don't have one. You can use a regular non-stick cooking pot with a heavy bottom. There are so many variations of this popular and loved by many recipe and every family makes its own version. Although the traditional plov is cooked with beef (and a larger amount of oil), you can use any meat you like: beef, chicken or pork. 
I like this dish not only because it's very tasty, but also because it's a a meat and a side dish in one - therefore an easy and fast solution for your busy weeknight dinners and lunches. It is also tastes great reheated so you can make enough to eat for a couple of days. Super convenient, right?

Start by cleaning and washing meat and cut it to 1-inch pieces. If you don't use chicken breast, but pork or beef, trim the meat of excess fat and sinews. 
Pat meat dry with kitchen paper towel before frying. 

Meat pilaf
Heat 4 tbsp. oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add meat and fry until golden and cooked through in a single layer. 
If you use a cast iron Dutch oven you don't have to fry the meat in a single layer, only if you use a regular skillet. It's important because we want to sear the meat to prevent it from becoming dry. Fry it for about 8 minutes. Continue with the next butch until all the meat is cooked. Add more oil if needed.

Meat pilaf
In a large non-stick cooking pot heat 3 tbsp. oil. Add onions and fry for about 9 min until soft and translucent, stirring frequently. 
Add meat, carrots, salt, pepper, cumin, thyme, and sauté for about 2 minutes. 

Meat pilaf
Add 1.5 cup of warm water and cover the pot. Reduce the heat to low and cook for about 30-40 min or until the meat is tender. Add more water if needed. 
In the meantime, soak the rice for at least 20 min. Rinse rice well, filling the water and draining it a couple of times until the water is running clear. If you cook the rice without soaking and rinsing it well, the starch will make it sticky. 
Add rice to the pot, spreading it on top and carefully even the surface. Slowly add hot water to cover about 1 inch above the rice. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, but do not stir. Cover the pot and cook on a low-medium heat until the water is almost absorbed. 

Gaarlic
Cut off the head of garlic to expose the cloves. 
Put the head of garlic, cut side down into the center and cover with rice. Make holes through the rice, reduce the heat to low, cover and cook until rice is cooked through. 

Meat pilaf
Turn off the heat, quickly remove the lid, cover the pot with a kitchen towel and then with the lid. The towel will absorb the condensation from the lid. Let it stand for at least 20 minutes. 

Remove the garlic head and stir everything gently to combine. 
Enjoy your delicious meal!

Chicken Pilaf - Russian Plov

 

 

Ingredients:

  • 800 gr chicken, pork or beef
  • 7 tbsp. oil for frying
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 carrots, grated on large
  • 5 cups rice, long grain (I use Basmati rice)
  • 1 whole garlic
  • 1 tsp. cumin powder
  • 1 tsp. Thyme
  • Salt, pepper to taste
Meat & Poutry   Side Dish  


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