Halal Cart Chicken and Rice
One of the things I miss most about NYC is the halal cart chicken and rice so let’s make it at home and even better! You’ll want to smother the white sauce over everything!
To make this recipe, I took a look at how Halal Guys makes their secret white sauce. The ingredients on their packet indicate that it is just mayonnaise, black pepper, and some other spices. After trying this out, I felt like the sauce could be so much better. The addition of toum/garlic spread takes this sauce to the next level! You can always tweak this dish to include gyro or steak shawarma instead of chicken!
Halal Cart Bowls
- 2 cups Basmati rice
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons ghee or unsalted butter
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 to 1 1/2 teaspoon salt to taste
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 pounds chicken thighs boneless & skinless
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- juice of 2 lemons
- 1 tablespoon garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons allspice
- 1 tablespoon coriander
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt to taste
- 2 teaspoons sumac
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
- oil for frying chicken
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup toum/garlic spread
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- water to thin out 2-4 tablespoons
- iceberg lettuce shredded
- tomatoes diced
- pita bread sliced
- sriracha or hot sauce of choice
- Whisk together mayo, toum, sour cream, black pepper, lemon juice, sugar, and water to desired consistency until smooth. Set aside.
- To a large bowl, add the chicken thighs, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and spices. Mix to marinade evenly. For more flavor, you can score the chicken before marinading and let it sit overnight or for at least half an hour.
- Heat oil in a cast iron skillet or pan over high heat. Add the chicken and cook on each side until a nice brown crust develops, about 4 minutes on each side. Then turn the heat to low and cover to cook for a few minutes more until cooked in the center.
- Transfer the chicken to a cutting board. Once cooled to touch, chop into small pieces.
- Optional: Add the chopped chicken back to the pan and give it a quick fry for extra flavor.
- Wash rice for 2 minutes with warm water or until the water runs clear. Another option is to let it soak in water for 30 minutes and then drain.
- To a pot over medium heat, add the ghee or butter. Then, add the rice and toast it for about 3 minutes until fragrant.
- Add the chicken broth, turmeric, oregano, cumin, salt, and bay leaf. Mix together and bring to a boil. Then lower the heat to simmer, cover, and cook for about 11-12 minutes. Turn off the heat but leave covered for 5 minutes.
- After 5 minutes, take off the lid, remove the bay leaf, and fluff with a fork.
- In a plate, add rice, chicken, tomatoes, lettuce, and pita bread. Drizzle tons of white sauce and some hot sauce on top.