Go Back

Halebibi – Persian Rice Pilaf

Servings 6
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs


  • 2 cups rice
  • 8 (1 ½ lb) chicken drumsticks or thighs
  • 1 ½ cups sour grape juice (found in Middle Eastern stores)
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 tbsp chicken soup powder
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsps turmeric
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tsps salt
  • ¼ cup oil
  • 1 tsp whole coriander seeds
  • 2 onions, sliced


  • Place the rice in a bowl and cover it with hot water. Stir the rice well and discard of the water. Repeat the process two more times. Transfer the rice to a strainer, and rinse under running water. Set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan, combine 2 ½ cups water with the soup powder. Add the chicken and bring to a boil. Add the tomato paste, turmeric, salt and pepper. Lower the heat and cook for about 30 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pot and set aside.
  • Add to the pot 1 ½ cups of sour grape juice (or water) and the rice, and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until all liquids are absorbed in the rice, about 30 minutes.
  • In a large sauté pot, heat the oil and sauté the coriander seeds for 2 minutes. Add the onion and sauté for 3 more minutes. Add the cooked rice, the remaining ½ cup water, and the chicken, and cook covered, over low heat, for 50 minutes.
  • Plate the rice on a serving platter and place the chicken pieces on top. Serve hot and enjoy!
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Persian
Keyword: Persian, rice pilaf