Around the world in 80 chulents... Iraqi Tabit (cheats version!)

As the cold weather sets in, and shabbat evenings get longer while shabbat afternoons get shorter and shorter, the importance of the long, slow cooked stew comes into it's own!
Chulent, traditional ashkenazi shabbat stew, takes its name, I'm told, from the French 'chaud long' - hot for a long time. But there are many different permutations; from Sephardi Dafina to Iraqi Tabit (chicken and rice).
We make a huge variety of chulents, and a little while ago I was joking with a friend how I'd love to have a food blogging project (like in Julie and Julia). So, here it is, I am going to try and record a winters worth of chulent recipes... I'm not sure we'll get to 80, but we should certainly make it around the world.
Now I have to confess it isn't always me making the chulents, G is a huge part of this, especially at the moment when even though I endeavour to be home on a Thursday night so we can cook together, work just isn't letting up and evenings are very booked up.
So last night I returned home to the delicious smell of Tabit being prepared. Well, it's a sort of cheats Tabit if we're being honest. The real tabit involves an incredibly complicated skinning of a chicken, stuffing and sewing it back together. Very few of our recipes are exact sciences but even if they don't always come out looking right they taste good; hot and hearty!
For an easier version of tabit we:

Fry one large onion, chopped
Add Baharat spice mix
Add a spoon full of tomato paste
Brown chicken pieces, then remove from pot
Add some water (maybe a litre, depending on how much you are making! You will need to experiment)
Add rice and par cook

We then place the rice, stock and chicken pieces in a slow cooker bag (roasting bag), tie the top, and leave it in the slow cooker on low till lunch! You can also add whole eggs to the top of the stew for delicious meaty eggs with it. The best bit is if you succeed in making 'crispy bits' - very brown crispy rice that forms at the edges if it's not too wet...
That's our lunch for tomorrow...
Shabbat shalom


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