Lebanese poussin with spiced aubergine pilaf

Lebanese poussin with spiced aubergine pilaf

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(7 ratings)

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 45 mins

More effort

Serves 2
This Middle Eastern-style meal makes a decadent supper for two- serve your young chickens with a spicy and aromatic rice accompaniment

Nutrition and extra info

  • Gluten-free

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal908
  • fat42g
  • saturates9g
  • carbs59g
  • sugars20g
  • fibre6g
  • protein62g
  • salt0.9g
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  • 1 aubergine, roughly diced



    Although it's technically a fruit (a berry, to be exact), the aubergine is used as a…

  • 1 tbsp olive oil, plus a bit extra
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 2 small poussin
  • ¼ tsp allspice, plus 2 good pinches
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 onion, halved and thinly sliced



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 100g basmati rice
  • 2 tbsp pine nut
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • good pinch of ground cloves
  • 200ml hot chicken stock (or gluten-free alternative)
  • 2 tbsp currant
  • 1 large tomato, chopped



    A member of the nightshade family (along with aubergines, peppers and chillies), tomatoes are in…

  • 1 tbsp chopped mint, plus a few leaves and sprigs to serve



    There are several types of mint, each with its own subtle difference in flavour and appearance.…

  • 1 tbsp chopped dill, plus a few leaves and sprigs to serve
  • 2 tbsp pomegranate molasses
  • sumac, for sprinkling (optional- we used Bart)



    This wine-coloured ground spice is one of the most useful but least known and most…


  1. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 4. Toss the aubergine in 1 tbsp of the oil until well coated. Pour into a large roasting tin, then push to the sides of the tin to make a space for the poussins. Rub some oil onto the skin of the poussins, sprinkle with the pinches of allspice, salt and lots of black pepper, pop a bay leaf inside each bird, then roast for 35 mins. (Leave to cook for about 10 mins before you start the pilaf so they are ready at the same time.)

  2. To make the pilaf, heat the remaining 1 tbsp oil in a medium pan and fry the onion for 5-8 mins until golden. Tip in the rice and pine nuts, stir for about 1 min, then add the spices, including the ¼ tsp allspice. Pour in the stock, stir in the currants, then cover the pan and cook for 7 mins.

  3. Take the lid off the pan, add the tomato, mint and dill, then cover and cook 2-3 mins more until the stock has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Set aside, covered, to keep warm.

  4. Meanwhile, once the poussins have had their 35 mins, drizzle the pomegranate molasses over them and return them to the oven for 10 mins more until they and the aubergines are tender.

  5. Set the poussins aside to rest for a few mins while you toss the aubergine into the pilaf. Serve the poussins whole, or portion and serve on top of the pilaf. Scatter with the dill and mint leaves, and sprinkle with a little sumac, if you like.

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Comments, questions and tips

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14th Sep, 2016
Makes loads, we shared one poussin between two so it lasted for two nights. The pilaf is literally the best thing I have ever made. Really easy to make and super tasty. I also couldn't find pomegranite mollases, so I just added a little bit of pomegranite juice.
9th Aug, 2014
Enjoyed cooking this dish. It was relatively straight forward to put together and really delicious. The rice pilaf would be great with plain chops, roasts and some fish. I would be careful about the size of poussin as I felt portions were huge. Will try with bone in chicken supremes as well. Watch stock quantity as the rice dried up before been cooked through. Otherwise a great dish.
24th Nov, 2013
This was delicious - I used date syrup instead of pomegranate molasses because I had it in my cupboard. Just divine!
25th Sep, 2013
The rice was absolutely delicious! best thing I've eaten in ages!
8th Sep, 2013
The rice is so tasty. Would be just as good with chicken and 1 poussin per person is a big dinner, I did 2 poussins for 2 adults and 2 toddlers and it's more than enough.
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