Prepare the chicken first - both chicken breast and chicken thigh will work well for this recipe. Even bone in chicken thigh would work well. If using boneless chicken, cube it into small, bite-sized pieces. Preheat a large saute pan over medium-high heat and add a drizzle of oil. Fry the chicken in two batches to avoid overcrowding the pan. First season the chicken generously with salt and pepper, then brown the chicken all over, frying for about 6 to 8 minutes, just until browned all over. At this point the chicken doesn't need to be cooked all the way; it will finish cooking with the rice. Once browned, remove from the pan and set aside.
Into the same pan, add the butter and allow it to melt over medium heat. Add the diced onion and carrot and saute for 4 to 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent and tender. Add the garlic, cumin and coriander and continue cooking for another 30 seconds to 1 minute, cooking the garlic briefly. Return the chicken to the pan and add in the rice, salt and ground black pepper, to taste. Stir everything together using a spatula. Watch my video recipe to see how I do it!
Pour the chicken broth into the pan but do not stir; let the chicken broth stand over the chicken and rice. Close the pan with a tight fitting lid and bring the rice to simmer over medium heat. Reduce the heat to low and cook the rice for 20 to 25 minutes, until the liquids are absorbed and the rice is done. Remove the rice from heat and let it stand for another 10 minutes. Fluff the rice with a large fork and garnish with chopped fresh parsley before serving with a side of pickles, pickled tomatoes and/or sour cream. For reheating, fry the rice pilaf in a hot pan with a drizzle of oil!
TIP: This chicken rice pilaf can be made with a variety of rice types - I recommend using Basmati long-grain rice. It's an aromatic, long-grain rice that cooks quickly and remains fluffy. You can also use brown rice or even buckwheat for this recipe. Whichever rice type you choose, follow the cooking instructions on the rice packaging. Some rice types require more or less liquids/broth and some may require longer or shorter cooking times.