Chicken Biryani one of the most loved dishes in India. But do you know the word Biryani is derived from Persian word “Birian” which means “fried before cooking” and “Birinj” which is the Persian word for “Rice”. Historians believe that Biryani originated in Persia and was introduced to India by Mughals. It was further developed in Indian kitchens according to the different regions in the country (Maharashtra, Punjab, Hyderabad and Kerala etc have their own versions). Traditionally Biryani is cooked on charcoal in earthen pots. Preparing Biryani is a slow and a lengthy process, but the taste totally justifies the time invested in preparing. The recipe I have shared is the one my mom makes at home and one of my favorites (Always use Basmati rice to prepare Biryani)
Marination Time: 10-15 hours Cooking and Assembling: 1 hour Serves: 4
500 grams Chicken
500 grams Basmati Rice
5-6 Green cardamom
3-4 Black cardamom
2 Bay leaf’s
2 tsp Shahi Jeera
3 tbsp Ghee / Clarified butter
1 large onion
Few Saffron strands
Half a bunch of Coriander
Oil for deep frying onions
Salt to taste
2 large Onions, sliced (deep fried and crushed)
3 tbsp Yogurt
3 tsp ginger garlic paste
2 tsp Lemon juice
1 tsp Turmeric powder
1 tbsp Garam masala
2 tbsp Red chilli powder
Slice the onions, apply some salt and keep aside (this will help the onions to sweat and will be crispier after frying). After 10-15 mins place onions in a cloth and squeeze the water and keep aside. Heat oil in a pot and fry the onions. In the same oil deep fry coriander. Keep onion and coriander aside.
In a bowl make a marinade with all the ingredients, add crushed deep-fried onions and marinate the chicken. Let it marinate for 10-15 hours
Take a pot and boil water (3 times of rice) with a bay leaf, a pinch of salt and a dash of lemon juice. Cook the rice just as you cook the pasta “Al Dante”. Drain rice and rinse it in cold water to avoid overcooking.
In a pot heat ghee/ clarified butter, when the ghee is hot add shahi jeera and let it crackle. Now add peppercorns, cloves, green cardamom, black cardamom, bay-leaf and let it pop. Now add Onions and saute for 2-3 minutes on high flame.
When Onion is cooked add the marinated chicken and let it cook on medium flame until chicken is cooked. Adjust the seasonings.
Soak saffron in warm water. Take a Handi (Pot), place some gravy on bottom of the pot, now place a layer of rice, repeat it once more. Sprinkle the saffron water on the biryani. Now you will have 4 layers. Garnish with some deep-fried onions, fried coriander leaves, fried cashewnuts and boiled eggs (optional).
Serve hot with Raita, sliced onions.