Preparing biryani is always an elaborate affair at my in-law's place. The main dish should be accompanied with raita, green salads and an appropriate sweet dish. Here is the recipe for Kesari Chicken Biryani.
- 2 cups / 400 gms basmati rice
- 1 kg chicken (cut into 8-10 pieces)
- 1/2 cup / 2 large onions, finely sliced
- 3 tbsp ginger paste
- 3 tbsp garlic paste
- 3 cups / 600 gms curd / yogurt
- 6 tbsp ghee
- 2-4 green chiili, chopped
- 2 tsp red chilli powder
- 5 cups water
- few strands of saffron / kesar
- 1/2 cup (100 ml) warm milk
- a pinch of yellow food colour
- salt to taste
- 2 tbsp mint leaves / pudina patta, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp fresh coriander leaves / dhaniya patta, finely chopped
- 2 bay leaves / tej patta
- 4 (1") cinnamon sticks / dalchini
- 10 cloves / laung
- 10 green cardamoms / chhoti elaichi
- 2 black cardamoms / badi elaichi
- 1 tsp mace / jawitri
- 3 tsp black cumin seeds / shahi jeera
- 2 large onions, sliced & fried
- 10-12 pieces, kashewnuts, fried
- 1 bunch corinader leaves, chopped
- 1 boiled egg, sliced
- Clean and wash the chicken pieces. Wash and soak the rice for 30 mins. Beat the curd and divide into two equal portions.
- Dissolve the saffron strands in warm milk. Add one portion of the beaten curd to the saffron-milk. Keep aside.
- Take a deep bottomed handi / pan, add water and bring to boil. Reduce flame and add 1 bay leaf, 2 green cardamom and 2 cloves.
- Add the drained rice to the boiling water and add salt to taste. Cover and cook until the rice is half cooked. Drain the rice. Apply yellow food colour to the rice. Mix and keep aside.
- Heat ghee in a deep bottomed kadhai, add the remaining whole spices with black cumin seeds and fry on medium heat.
- Add the sliced onions and saute until golden brown. Add ginger-garlic paste, chopped green chillies, mint & coriander leaves and red chilli powder and fry for 1-2 mins.
- Add the chicken and salt to taste and cook for a further 3 - 4 minutes.
- Mix the second portion of the beaten curd with 1 cup water, add to the kadhai and bring to the boil. Reduce flame and simmer until the chicken is almost done.
- Take a handi, grease with a little ghee and place about 1/3rd of semi-cooked rice in it.
- Layer half of the chicken pieces on the rice. Sprinkle half of the saffron-milk & curd mixture over this.
- Top with the second layer of rice, remaining chicken and sprinkle the remaining saffron-milk & curd mixture over this.
- Finally make a layer with the remaining rice. Add the fried onion slices and kashewnuts.
- Lid the vessel and make it airtight (put a layer of atta dough round the vessel top).
- Put on high flame for 5 mins and then reduce to low flame. Wait for 2-3 min, turn the vessel (ensure that you do not shake the handi) and keep rotating the vessel every 2-3 min for about 15-20 min.
- Put off the flame and wait for about 10 min before opening. Before serving, mix the biryani from the bottom.
- Garnish with boiled egg halves & chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with raita, chutney and green salads.