A traditional dum style biryani with layers of saffron rice and creamy mutton. An absolute pleaser at dinner parties!
Ingredients of Shahi Biryani
1/2 kg mutton-cut into small pieces
1 cup onions-finely sliced
Ghee for frying the onions
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 bay leaf
1/4 cup clotted cream
2 Tbsp chopped coriander leaves-to garnish
For the marinate:
1 cup onions-grated
1 tsp garlic paste
1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp black cumin seeds salt to taste
1 cup yoghurt
1 tsp garam masala
For the rice:
2 cups basmati rice-cleaned and soaked in water
2 green cardamoms
1/2 tsp black cumin seeds a piece of cinnamon-broken into smaller pieces
Salt to taste
1/2 tsp saffron-soaked in 1/4 cup of warm milk
2 Tbsp ghee
How to Make Shahi Biryani
Mix together all the spices and marinate the meat in it for 4 hours:
1.Heat enough ghee in a broad heavy-based pan. Fry the onions till brown and crisp. Strain onions from the ghee and transfer on to an absorbent paper and set aside.
2.In 1/2 cup of the ghee that is left in the pan, add the cumin seeds and bay leaf, stir a few times till they change color a little and keeping the heat high, add in the meat mixture.
3.Stir-fry meat over high heat till the pieces look opaque. Lower the heat, partially cover and simmer, stirring a few times till the meat is tender. Saute till the water dries up and fat separates.
4.Add water and cook further, in case meat has not cooked through.
5.If meat cooks through before the water dries up, uncover the pan, and let water evaporate over high heat. Remove pan from stove and add the fried onions, cream and coriander leaves and mix well. While the meat is cooking, drain the rice and set aside.
6.Heat 2 tablespoons of ghee and add the black cumin seeds, cardamom, cloves and cinnamon. Stir a few times and add the rice and the salt. Now add 2 1/2 cups of water, and bring to boil.
7.Lower heat, cover and let the rice cook for 8 minutes. Shut off heat, leaving pan on stove. The rice should be almost done.
8.Half an hour before serving, divide the rice and meat into halves each. Take half the meat out of the pan, leaving one layer at the bottom. Spread this layer well in the pan.
9.Now cover this with a layer of half the rice, sprinkle half the saffron flavoured milk over it, and then add the second layer of meat and finally the other half of the rice. Sprinkle the rest of the milk and saffron mixture over rice.
10.Seal pan with wheat flour and place on a griddle over low flame for half an hour. Alternatively, arrange in an ovenproof dish and place in a pre-heated oven for about half an hour.
11.Serve in the same dish or mix gently and transfer on to a serving dish.