My Global Food Challenge

United Arab Emirates

Machboos or Fooga (United Arab Emirates)

Yield: 6 Servings


4 cups water
4 chicken bouillon cubes or 5 teaspoons chicken stock
2 tablespoons olive oil
8 -10 bone-in chicken pieces skin removed
2 whole dried limes (loomi)
1/8 teaspoon saffron
1 large onion chopped
1 large tomato chopped
1 garlic clove minced
1/2 -3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground turmeric
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons curry powder
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional) or 1/2 teaspoon chili powder (optional)
3/4 -1 teaspoon salt
2 cups basmati rice rinsed and drained


Preheat oven to 375°F and grease a 9×13 baking dish.

Bring water to boiling and add chicken bouillon cubes, lower heat and add dried limes and saffron and let simmer till bouillon is dissolved –keep it hot. Sprinkle chicken with half the spices (except the garlic). Heat the olive oil in a large skillet on med-high to high heat and fry the chicken till both sides are brown, lower heat to medium and remove the chicken to a plate.

In that same skillet sauté the onions for 2 minutes, add tomatoes, garlic and remaining spices and sauté another 2 minutes, then turn off the burner. Add the rice and stir for about 30 seconds to 1 minute, till well coated. Spread rice in the baking dish and place the chicken pieces over the rice.

Gently press the dried limes on the sides of the pot to distribute flavor in the broth and then poor on the rice and chicken (the whole thing including the dried limes) and cover tightly with foil. Bake for 40-45 minutes–do not open the foil cover at all until the time is up.

Link to My Post on United Arab Emirates:

Cuisine :   Emirati    

Main Ingredient :   Chicken

“If you want to eat this the authentic way, you can lay newspaper on the floor (for easy cleanup of spills), put all of this on a very large platter or on a couple large sheets of aluminum foil laid on the newspaper and everyone sits around and eats with their right hand!”

File:United Arab Emirates in Asia (-mini map -rivers).svg

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