Babatunde’s jollof rice with chicken

by Victoria Brown

A version of west Africa’s most popular dish

This recipe is part of my Box clever series: a regular guide to easy, delicious and internationally inspired packed lunches. Read the article that inspired the dish.


1 red pepper, deseeded and roughly chopped
1 onion, roughly chopped
5 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
2 scotch bonnet chillies, roughly chopped (or to taste)
1 x 400g tin of tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato paste
100ml vegetable oil
1 chicken stock cube
1 vegetable stock cube
1 tsp liquid seasoning, or to taste
½ tsp Caribbean hot curry powder
Few pinches of herbes de Provence
2 chicken legs
500g easy cook long grain rice
500ml chicken or vegetable stock


Preheat the oven to 180C.

Put the pepper, onion, garlic, chillies, tinned tomatoes and tomato paste into a food processor, top up with water to cover and blend until smooth.

Heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add the blended mix and cook for a few minutes, stirring frequently.

Crumble the stock cubes into the sauce, then add the liquid seasoning, curry powder, a pinch or two of herbes de Provence and stir to combine. Season with salt, to taste.

Put a spoon or two of the sauce on an oven tray and place the chicken legs on top. Pour a few more spoons of sauce over the chicken legs and sprinkle with a pinch of herbes de Provence and salt, if desired. Bake for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, rinse the rice until the water runs clear. Add to the saucepan with the sauce and top up with stock—the liquid should come to approximately 3cm above the rice. Turn the heat down to low and cover.

Cook covered for approximately 12 mins, until most of the moisture has absorbed, then remove the cover and stir until the rest of the moisture has evaporated. Remove from the heat and season with more salt, if required. Serve with the baked chicken legs.

Recipe and images: Victoria Brown