Family feast

Forbidden Rice Chicken

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This comforting one pot meal is packed full of filling and hearty winter ingredients; roast chicken, root vegetables and a super grain fit for royalty, and your hungry family.

In ancient China, black rice was a delicacy reserved solely for the Emperor and the Royal Family. Black rice is of course no longer forbidden for common folk like me… which is just as well because it has a lovely sticky texture, nutty flavour and gives this dish’s sauce a beautiful black glossy finish.

Rich & Source of Nutritional Benefits

From a nutritional perspective, this black grain, in comparison to other rice varieties, is low in fat and a good source of healthy carbs, antioxidants and dietary fibre.


How to make it


Preheat the oven to;
190°C / 374°F (fan)
210°C / 410°F (conventional)


In a sieve, rinse the rice under cold water.
This helps clean the rice slightly before cooking and reduce some of the starch.
Pour the rice, water, and stock in a medium pan over medium heat.
Bring to a boil and turn off the heat.

While your rice is cooking, prep all the other ingredients.

250 g black rice
2 stock cubes
200 ml water


Place a large saucepan or ovenproof pot over medium heat.
Add in the olive oil. When hot, add the chicken legs in a single layer without crowding.
Cook for around 8 minutes, turning once or until chicken skin is slightly coloured/browned.
Remove with tongs and set aside.
Turn down the low-medium heat.
Add the onion, garlic, celery, then cook for 5 minutes until the onions are translucent.

2 tbsp olive oil
6-8 chicken drumsticks
1 red oniond
1 celery stick
2 garlic cloves


Pour in the rice and water, and bring back to a boil.
Add bay, lemon rind, herbs, carrots, and beetroot.
Mix well together.
Place back in the chicken, so it sits on top of the rice and veg.
At this stage don't stir the stock, you want the rice in the water, not on the chicken. Otherwise, you'll have uncooked rice.
Add the peppers and lemon wedges.
Bring to boil, and turn off the heat.
Pop the lid on the pan and put it in the oven for 50 minutes.

3 mixed peppers
2 purple carrot
1 large beetroot
1/2 lemon
1/2 lemon rind
2 bay leaves
fresh parsley
fresh thyme leaves
freshly ground black pepper


After 40 minutes remove the lid from the pan
Cook uncovered for a further 10 minutes in the oven.
This gives the chicken and veg a lovely colour.
Remove from the oven, check the chicken and rice are completed cooked.
The rice should have a lovely soft texture, and not hard to bite.
If not quite ready, just cook on the hob for 5 minutes with the lid on.

Serve directly from the pan with a sprinkle of fresh herbs.

Crabtree Farm tips

Chicken is perfectly cooked when the juice runs clear. The meat is falling off the drumstick, and the internal temperature (when using a probe) is 165°F - 75°C.