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Dirty rice

"The polite people call this 'Southern fried rice'," says Llewellyn. "It gets its other name from its 'dirty' colour, which comes from the ground chicken livers. This is one of those dishes for which every Southern home has its own version. The one thing that should be standard is that the cooked rice should be at least a day old so it absorbs more flavours." Begin this recipe a day ahead to prepare the cooked rice.

You'll need

4 fresh chicken livers, trimmed of any sinew 2 tbsp canola oil 150 gm minced pork 375 ml (1½ cups) chicken stock 1 small onion, finely diced 2 celery stalks, finely diced 8 garlic cloves, crushed ½ tsp Piment d’Espelette (see note) or chilli powder, plus extra to serve 650 gm (3½ cups) day-old cooked medium-grain or long-grain white or brown rice (not freshly cooked) 1 long red fresno chilli or long red chilli (see note), stem removed and thinly sliced, seeds and all 4 spring onions, thinly sliced, including the green bits


  • 01
  • Purée livers in a bowl with a hand-held blender.
  • 02
  • Heat oil in a flameproof casserole over medium heat to just before smoking point (oil should be shimmering, with no bubbles; 200C). Add pork and puréed livers and stir until combined. Continue to cook until the meat begins to brown. Be patient: do not constantly stir – the more brown the meat is, the more flavourful it will be. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and continue cooking until the mixture is thoroughly browned and granular in texture. Pour in half the stock, then continue cooking until it has evaporated. Add onion, celery, garlic and piment d’Espelette and stir constantly over medium-high heat until the vegetables begin to caramelise (about 10 minutes). Add rice and remaining stock, then cover and simmer until the liquid has evaporated (4-5 minutes). Stir the rice, from bottom to top, adding chilli and spring onion; these should remain fresh and crunchy. Season to taste; add extra piment d’Espelette if desired. Turn out into a bowl and devour.

Note Piment d'Espelette, a type of French dried, flaked chilli, is available from Hartsyard uses fresno chillies, which are similar to jalapeños; due to availability we used long red chillies instead. This recipe is from Fried Chicken & Friends ($49.99, hbk) by Gregory Llewellyn and Naomi Hart, published by Murdoch Books and has been reproduced with minor GT style changes.

At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people

Featured in

Aug 2015

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