Biryani

My mom does not love cooking but she cooks well and there are some special items that she cooks just awesome. Biryani is one of them. She makes it in her own way which is not too spicy or heavy for stomach. I initially thought it is a cumbersome process but well … its worth the effort. And definitely a treat to your taste buds.

So this one is an inheritance from my mom… Chicken biriyani – my mom’s way!

Ingredients:

  • Basmati Rice – 1 cup
  • Chicken pieces – 500 gms
  • Onions, sliced – 3-4 medium
  • Mustard Oil – 3 tbsp (For chicken preparation, though optional and you may also use white oil)
  • White Oil (For rice preparation) – 1 tbsp
  • Ginger Paste – 1 tbsp
  • Garlic Paste – 1 tbsp
  • Whole peppercorns – 4-6
  • Whole nutmeg (Jaifal) – 1
  • Mace (Javitri) – 2
  • Bay leaves – 2
  • Coriander powder – 1tsp
  • Red chilli powder – 1tsp or to taste
  • Whole garam masala / spices
    • Green cardamom – 3-4
    • Black cardamom – 3-4
    • Cinnamon sticks – 2 one inch sticks
    • Cloves – 6

For convenience you can also use readymade biriyani masala (available in Asian/Indian stores if staying abprad) instead of the above mentioned spices and it would work out almost fine. Recommended – Shan / MDH biriyani masala.

Method:

  • Heat mustard oil in wok.
  • Fry the onions till brown and then take it out from oil.
  • Grind the whole garam masala along with the fried onions to a paste.
  • To the oil left in wok add whole bay leaves and chicken pieces and fry them.
  • Add the half of the ground masala and onion paste, ginger garlic paste, coriander powder, red chilli powder and broken mace and nutmeg.
  • Cook on medium heat till the chicken softens and is almost done, in case it dries up sprinkle few drops of water.
  • Keep aside the chicken for later use.
  • In a pressure cooker add white oil (Do not use mustard oil for this).
  • When the oil is heated add the remaining ground masala and salt to taste.
  • Add rice and just the double amount of water.
  • Do not cook the rice completely, rather let it cook 3/4th the way.
  • In a flat bottomed vessel 9keeping it on low heat) add rice and chicken in layers. Put a part of the rice in a layer, then add the chicken pieces over it as the second layer, add rice to the 3rd layer and so on depending on the quantity.
  • Sprinkle kewra oil (for essence) and 2-3 drops of orange color. You can omit this step too.
  • Let it simmer for 10 to 15 minutes so that the rice gets cooked completely in the steam.
  • Check on the doneness of the rice. Do not mix this with a ladle or spoon, rather cover the vessel and shake it hard. This way the rice and chicken gets mixed without messing it up.
  • Serve it hot.

Note –

  • Do not use tomatoes or turmeric powder for this recipe.
  • You can also use yogurt /curd to marinate the chicken before cooking.
  • You can use mutton instead of chicken to prepare mutton biryani.
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