Karimah’s Saudi Stuffed Chicken (Dajaj Mahshy)
by Karimah Bint Dawoud, Food Writer and Well Being Chaplain
I love Saudi Arabia and I love Saudi food, this little known about cuisine is as mysterious as the black Saudi mountains, a pilgrimage for the serious foodie that’s worth every succulent moment. Hidden treasurers such as this dish, Mahshy Dajaaj.
This is special occasion food. In another time and space I ate this fantastic meal and I had to find the recipe and make my version. Its sweet and savory all at the same time, its subtle with undertones of spice, every time I eat it , my taste buds tell my brain that we are away, somewhere far away on my magic carpet, in the East eating the food of sheikhs and sultans under the stars.
Serves 4 generously
1 large chicken (3 lbs) OR 4 quails
1/4 cup sliced almonds, dry roasted
1/2 lb minced beef
3 tablespoons of oil
1 onion, grated
2 cups cooked white rice al dente
1-2 sweet bell peppers
3-5 medium onions
½ bunch fresh coriander/cilantro
½ bunch fresh parsely
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon cardamom
1 teaspoon saffron
1/4 cup raisins
Thoroughly clean the chicken inside and out.
Ground white pepper,
Grind, mix and rub over chicken inside and out.
iN A LARGE FRYING PAN -Add sweet pepper, carrots, coriander parsley (add chopped veggies, cut fine in grater processor) and sauté, fry gently
Add salt, black pepper, seven spices, turmeric and saffron
Add raisins, sauté a little more then take this veggie masala out of pan and place in bowl.
NO NEED TO CLEAN THE FRYING PAN -Add beef/lamb ground meat mice back into the frying pan and cook,
Lower the heat Season with salt, black pepper, Drain the water from the rice and add it to the meat. Stir until all components are well mixed.
Add 1/2 cup of hot water to rice, on the rice and left on low heat for a few minutes while I prepared the pan. This wouldn’t cook the rice through and we don’t want to do that, we just want to moisten the rice. Blend rice/meat mix with veggie masala.
Add the almonds to the above and mix well.
Stuff the chicken with the mixture and truss. Place in roasting tin and cover with foil.
Cook in oven for 1 1/2 hours , gas mark 7, electric 425F/ 220 C
Any leftover meat rice mix add hot water , to 1 finger tip above level of rice bring to boil and turn down heat and steam for 10 minutes.
Serve with roasted chicken and salad.
It’s one of those foods like Persian fesenjun that you want to eat again and again, it’s not easy to make, it time consuming and if you have a two or more of your its better, but it’s well worth the effort. The rice is complicated, carrots sweet peppers, onions, fruits, spices, , for now you will just have to lick the screen xxx