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Arabic chicken, cauliflower, potato and rice - Malooba recipe

Arabic chicken, cauliflower, potato and rice - Malooba recipe

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  • Meat and poultry
  • Poultry
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  • Chicken and rice

Maqluba is a traditional Palestinian dish, and it means "upside down chicken." It's quite a long recipe, but if you try it, you will be rewarded. Serve with natural yogurt and a salad on the side.

49 people made this

IngredientsServes: 6

  • 1 (1.8kg) whole chicken, cut into pieces
  • 1.5 litres water
  • 1 medium onion, quartered
  • 2 tablespoons ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 3 whole cardamom seeds
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 460g uncooked basmati rice, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoons ground allspice
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large potato, sliced into rounds
  • 1 large head cauliflower, separated into florets
  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced

MethodPrep:1hr ›Cook:2hr ›Ready in:3hr

  1. Place chicken in a large saucepan with 1.5 litres water, onion, 2 tablespoons allspice, ground cardamom, cardamom seeds, whole cloves and bay leaves. Bring to the boil, and cook until chicken is tender, about 40 minutes. Remove chicken, pass through a sieve and reserve broth.
  2. Soak the rice in water while waiting for the chicken to cook. When the chicken is almost done, drain the water off and stir in 1 1/2 tablespoons of allspice.
  3. Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Fry the potatoes and cauliflower in the hot oil until browned. They do not need to fully cook.
  4. In a separate pot, layer fried potatoes on the bottom. This is done so that the rice will not stick to the bottom of the pan. Add the cauliflower and tomatoes; sprinkle a handful of rice over the vegetables. Remove the bones from the chicken and place the chicken in the saucepan. Cover with the rest of the rice. Pour in the reserved stock until it reaches a level about 1.2cm above the level of the rice. Cover the saucepan and cook over medium-low heat for 1 hour, until rice is tender.
  5. When the liquid has absorbed, have a large round tray ready. Uncover the saucepan and place the tray over the top. Invert so that the pan is upside down on top of the tray. Let stand for 5 minutes like this, then slowly remove the pot to let the food fall onto the tray.


You may substitute 1 large aubergine for cauliflower or use both. Slice aubergine in rounds on the larger pieces cut in half. If using aubergine with the cauliflower, add it to the pot along with the cauliflower.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(28)

Reviews in English (24)


This is a great all in one meal. It smells wonderful while it's cooking. Put it on a fancy platter and it looks beautiful. It is really simple to make.-18 Dec 2002

by hsyousef

My Jordanian husband makes this all the time. I don't care for the chicken with bones so he uses boneless skinless chicken breast and just reduces the boiling time. He also uses a pinch of saffron while soaking the rice... it gives it a nice flavor.-17 Jun 2006

by Kim Treat

Thanks so much for submitting this recipe. I am a newly converted American muslim, and I have tasted and seen this dish prepared by other muslims. Its nice to have my own recipe now. Thank you!-11 Mar 2004

Maqluba (Upside-Down Beef, Eggplant and Rice)

Published: Apr 29, 2021 · Modified: Apr 11, 2020 by Amira · This post may contain affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission.

Maqluba or Maqlooba is an upside down rice dish that is very common throughout the middle east. Layers of vegetables, spiced rice and meat cooked in your oven then flipped for a stunning comfort food dinner.

This is a one dish meal made traditionally with cauliflower or eggplants. There are many variations to this dish in the region, but the method is the same. Here is a step by step guide to make the easiest foolproof Makloubeh to grantee success each time

Maachher Jhol - Bangladeshi Fish Curry

India's Neighbouring country and my Father's birthplace is Bangladesh. My father was born in undivided India. Like him a lot of present residents of East India were born in today's Bangladesh and when they came to India (as it is today) they brought along with them the food habits and some wonderful recipes. Today I am going to share one such recipe, which I learnt from from her. This simple fish curry can be made from any white fish. In case you don't get fresh water fish, you can use sea fish too. but the Fish Curry and Rice remains the ultimate comfort food for any Bengalis around the world.

Preparation Time : 15 minutes
Resting Time : 10 -15 minutes
Cooking Time : 40 minutes (including frying the fish)
Difficulty : Medium
Serves : 6 - 8

Ingredients :

Method :

1) Cut the fillets in about 4 cm size. Make sure that the pieces are almost uniform in size, so that they cook at the same time.

2) Wash and clean the fish and drain properly.

3) Rub the fish well with the 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric and 1/2 teaspoon of salt and set aside for 10-15 minutes.

4) Heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan over a medium flame. If you are using mustard oil, let it get smoking hot.

5) Now put fish pieces carefully in the oil and brown lightly on all sides without cooking them through. Don't put all the pieces together, they would not fry properly, fry them in batches.

6) Gently lift the fish out of the oil and put it on a plate. Turn off the heat.

7) Combine the ground coriander seeds, the cumin, ginger, 1 tsp turmeric,chili powder (cayenne pepper) and 1/2 tsp of salt in a small bowl. Add 3 tbsp of water and mix.

8) Remove all but 5/6 tbsp of oil from the frying pan. Heat the frying pan over a medium flame.

9) When hot, put in the nigella seeds(onion seeds/kalonji). When they crackle, a few seconds later, put in the whole red chillies.

10) As soon as they darken a bit, put in the bay leaves. When the bay leaves start to darken, put in the chopped onion.

11) Stir and fry the onion, lowering the heat, if necessary, until it is translucent and lightly browned. But don't allow the onions to get too browned, that will spoil the taste totally.

12) Add the spice paste. Stir and fry it for about 1 minute.

13) Add around a cup of water and let it come to boil.

14) Bring the heat to simmer and put in the fish in a single layer. Lay the green chillies over the fish.

15) Increase the heat a little and let it simmer for 2 minutes, spooning the sauce over the fish pieces as you do so.

16) Now cover, turn the heat to low and cook the fish for 10-15 minutes or until it is just done.

How to make Perfect Maqlooba

Start with a layer or two of tomatoes – not only does this prevent the bottom burning but those tomatoes are to die for at the end of cooking time. I’ve been known to really pile the tomatoes on for the second reason.

Season all the layers well with salt and pepper as you get them ready and one more time as you’re layering (for good measure), BUT, don’t overdo it with the salt!

In my original, old photo, and in the video, you see me making just one layer of everything. But in these new pictures, as you can see, I split the lamb up to create more layers. It just looks prettier that way, doesn’t it?

What Rice to use for Maqluba?

Basmati is best for cooking maqluba. Now, no matter what I’m cooking, I do not believe in soaking the rice first, preferring the texture of it without the soaking period.

You can either use a pot or a portable rice cooker. I’ll let you decide this for yourself. Whatever you are using, just follow the instructions in the recipe for this maqluba recipe.

The Meat

Lamb is the meat of choice in the Middle East. Quite often, the lamb used is chopped up, bite-sized pieces. But I’ve gone for mince lamb here, for no particular reason. You can used either.

You can even use chicken or turkey in maqluba many of my readers who don’t eat red meat, have done that.

Or leave out the meat altogether, using just the same amount in vegetables, like in this Vegetable Maqluba.

Layers of flavour

The Vegetables in Maqluba

Traditionally, cauliflower, eggplants and capsicums (bell pepper) are the vegetables of choice. I like to add courgettes (zucchini) to the mix for even more variety. I find this limiting and prefer to use both as well as capsicum (bell peppers) and courgettes (zucchinis), the last 3 having a natural affinity with each other.

The vegetables for maqluba are also traditionally fried, before being layered. I prefer to roast them in the oven with a little oil, salt and pepper, not being a massive fan of fried food. Frying or roasting the vegetables give them flavour which transfers onto the final dish.

Feel free to cheat here and get ready roasted vegetables from your supermarket, if you fancy. I always have a bag of these in the freezer, they are so handy for when I’m feeling lazy.

The Stock for Maqluba

Many people are happy to add water to the cooking meat, remove the meat, then use the liquid as stock – I prefer to use additional homemade stock – or a good shop bought one if you’re not into making stock. Also, I find lamb stock overpowering and seldom make it or use it, preferring to use chicken stock across the board.

If you make your own stock, great, if not, use a good shop bought stockpot or cube, no artificial anything. We tend to have frozen homemade stock at home, but there are always some stockpots handy for when we run out, and because they are also very convenient. These are the stockpots that I use. I have them in the whole range.

One stockpot or stock cube is usually for 500ml (2 cups) of water. So for the amount of liquid in today’s maqluba recipe, 2 stock cubes or pots are perfect, as we have the meat and vegetables to flavour too.

The Saucepan

The saucepan/casserole dish. I believe a tightly packed pan will produce a tightly packed result, giving you a neat maqlooba “tower” that won’t fall apart. For the amount of ingredients here, you’ll need a dish that measures 20cm-22 cm (8″-9″) across ideally.

This is a question I get a lot. The saucepan I’m using in these latest pictures is a stone pot. And here is the link for the whole set.

And on that note, shall we get our aprons on?

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Watch the video: Maqlooba. Saudi Rice Dish Recipe. اسرارالمقلوبه السعوديه. وصفة رز


  1. Jorim

    It does not suit me. Maybe there are more options?

  2. Murphy

    Congratulations, you just visited brilliant idea

  3. Keoni

    Anything similar.

  4. Ridley

    To say the least.

  5. Dulkree

    It is by far the exception

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