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Home-made biryani

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27 replies to this topic

#1 mongo_jones

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 10:31 AM

does anyone have a regular home-kitchen friendly recipe for chicken or goat biryani that they'd be willing to share?

what do i mean by "regular home-kitchen friendly"? a recipe that doesn't require multiple hours of prep, multiple helpers or overly expensive/exotic ingredients or utensils.

thanks in advance!

#2 tryska

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 10:35 AM

umm..i do, at home. :(


i had no idea biryani involved a lot of prep-work? (goes to show you the extent of my mom's step-skipping)

#3 mongo_jones

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 11:07 AM

well, i've seen highly elaborate recipes for hyderabadi biryanis--marinades for the meat etc. can get highly complex and involve a lot of spice-pounding. i'm looking for quicker recipes that find ways to creatively approximate the tastes and aromas of the longer methods in 60-90 minutes.

#4 Jason Perlow

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 11:13 AM

A biryani is basically just the indian version of fried rice, right? But with basmati and indian spices and nuts?

http://www.recipezaa...chicken biryani

The key is that the whole thing is fried in the pan with ghee, right?
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#5 BBhasin

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 11:17 AM

A biryani is basically just the indian version of fried rice, right? But with basmati and indian spices and nuts?

http://www.recipezaa...chicken biryani

No Jason, NO
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#6 Jason Perlow

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 11:22 AM

A biryani is basically just the indian version of fried rice, right? But with basmati and indian spices and nuts?

http://www.recipezaa...chicken biryani

No Jason, NO

Ok, so I'm obviously an ignoramus. What's the key difference then?
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#7 tryska

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 11:30 AM

i wouldn't say fried rice.....maybe paella.


the way i've learned involves steaming the rice in the sauce.


basically my mother made a curry with the chicken or goat, included whole cinnamon stick, bay leaf, shredded coconut and curry leaf, added raw basmati rice, and stuck the whole thing in the oven.

#8 Jason Perlow

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 11:34 AM

Maybe I've never had a real biryani then, because at many of the indian restaurants I've been to, the end product is more fried-rice like than paella-like.
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#9 mongo_jones

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 11:34 AM

jason,

part of me suspects you're having us on. but ignoring that part for now: a biryani is basically a dish in which rice and another flavor base (usually meat, but sometimes also vegetarian) are cooked separately for a while and then finished together, so that the rice is completely infused with the flavors of the latter. different parts of india make biryanis differently. in some places they tend to be fairly moist, in others almost completely dry. some make biryanis with fully cooked rice, some with parboiled rice, some add raw rice to the liquid from the flavor base. some cook in sealed clay pots, some in pans, some in ovens. some have subtle flavors, some are extremely spicy. it is a complicated mess, but a delicious one.

mongo

#10 mongo_jones

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 11:36 AM

by the way jason, what's the story with your signature? or should i not ask?

#11 BBhasin

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 11:58 AM

Just kidding! but if you describle the biryani as simply fried rice the Nawabs are all going to turn in their graves.

Let me make an attempt to describe this delicacy in a nutshell,

You start with meat, usually mutton or goat with the bones, as though you were preparing rogan josh. You saute and color your onions, add your ginger, garlic, add your spices, saute some more add your meat and dry cook adding, just enough liquid so it does not stick to the bottom of the pot. When the meat is about half done
take the pot off the fire. Now you start assembling the biryani by layering it. On top of the meat in the pot add a layer of chopped cilantro, on top of that add a layer of chopped fresh mint, on top add blanched almonds, pistachioes, walnuts, pine nuts, raisins, then pour a layer of beaten yogurt on it( some people will also add a pinch of asphotedia to the yougurt), then you add a layer of deep fried golden onions. While all this layering bussiness is goin on, in a seperate pot take a mixture of water and milk, add sweet spices like cardamon,clove,cinamon,bayleaf and bring to a boil, add a really good quality of basmati rice. I dont remember the exact ratio of water, milk and rice but it is critical as you are looking for the rice to cook only till its about half done and consistancy is ' dry porridge like'. Now pour this 'rice mush' on top of the fried onions in the first (Biryani) pot. With a long needle make a few deep holes in the rice and pour saffron dissolved in warm milk down the holes( it will stain the grains of rice it touches as it goes down) close the holes. Place a moist towel on top of the rice( this traps all the aromas). Place the lid on the pot, seal the pot and the lid with some dough, place the biyani pot on back on the fire and finish cooking. Some people will also place live charcoals on top of the lid for even heat from the top.
During the cooking /finishing process, the juices from the yogurt and the 'rice gruel' permeate to the meat at the bottom and turn into steam and then go back up very delicately steaming and flavouring the rice.
when done the meat should be fork tender and the rice perfectly done with each grain seperate. Everything is not mixed all toghether, just the portion that is being served, you go down all the way with your serving spoon, to the bottom of the pot and dish and mix only the amount of rice and meat you intent to serve.
Biryanis are a delacacy because of the intricate and labour intensive process, there is tremendous expertise and experience reqired to make a good biryani as there are so many steps where you can easily mess up eg. incorrect liquid ratio in the rice or opening the pot too soon or too late.

whoa, sorry , the short explaination became a bit long. the biryanis most restaurants serve are the quick fix stuff.

PS I must mention that this is one version ans there are some regional differences

Edited by BBhasin, 03 October 2003 - 12:09 PM.

Bombay Curry Company
3110 Mount Vernon Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22305. 703. 836-6363

Delhi Club
Arlington, Virginia

#12 tryska

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 12:02 PM

i forgot about the yogurt that's very important.


being south indian we weren't real big on sweet elements in biryani, but above would be the traditional mughlai way.


i can see how out of necessity many restaurants would turn it into some sort of fried rice thing tho.

#13 Monica Bhide

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 12:06 PM

A biryani is basically just the indian version of fried rice, right? But with basmati and indian spices and nuts?

http://www.recipezaa...chicken biryani

No Jason, NO

Ok, so I'm obviously an ignoramus. What's the key difference then?

about 5 hours :wink:
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#14 BBhasin

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 12:11 PM

hey monica, lets hear your take on the biryani
Bombay Curry Company
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Delhi Club
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#15 tryska

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 12:12 PM

wow i just checked the link.....

umm..what the heck is this??!

http://www.recipezaa...?id=13896&path=

#16 Monica Bhide

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 12:21 PM

hey monica, lets hear your take on the biryani

:biggrin: You did such a nice job with it! I meant the difference in what Jason was describing and what a biryani is -- is about 5 more hours of cooking time
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#17 prasad2

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 12:28 PM

i forgot about the yogurt that's very important.


being south indian we weren't real big on sweet elements in biryani, but above would be the traditional mughlai way.


i can see how out of necessity many restaurants would turn it into some sort of fried rice thing tho.



i forgot about the yogurt that's very important.


Either you dump the yogurt as Bhasin mentioned or marinate your meat.

being south indian we weren't real big on sweet elements in biryani, but above would be the traditional mughlai way.


This yougurt is particularly not sweet, it's more a bit tangy.


i can see how out of necessity many restaurants would turn it into some sort of fried rice thing tho.


Not really if you start right and enjoy doing what you are doing.

#18 tryska

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 12:34 PM

i wasn't meaning the yogurt being the sweet element - i meant the raisins and saffron and various nuts. (minus cashews)

my mom typically made the "meat curry" first, then mixed in the yogurt, added the rice, and water to cover and set it in the over to steam. it made the meat so tender. sometimes she would strew fried onions and fried cashews, but not raisins and almonds. maybe coconut added a slight sweetness.

as far as restaurants - this is true, but how many do it for the art, as opposed to the money?

on a sidenote - wouldn't it dry out by the end of the night tho?

Edited by tryska, 03 October 2003 - 12:36 PM.


#19 bong

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 12:55 PM

BBhasin's recipe sounds wonderful.

As he mentions, Biryani is made many different ways by different folks... I don't think there is any "authentic" version. I think the common feature of all recipes with traditional roots is the fact that you have to bake/steam the meat and the rice together, and you'll also have to create the "layers".

Here is a recipe for Hyderabadi style Biryani that I use with great success:
http://www.pilot.co....ia_Biryani.html

Hyderabadi Biryani is traditionally made by the use of a sealed baking vessel, called "dum".

I have simplified it somewhat, of course, for my own use.
-- I do not use a "copper dish" . Any large bowl seems to work just fine.
-- I don't bother to "seal" the baking vessel like the recipe says with flour. I just use a heavy tight-fitting lid.

I find that of all the Biryani recipes that I have tried, this is one of the simplest and also one of the tastiest.

#20 mongo_jones

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 01:16 PM

bong, this recipe sounds good--however, i am likelier to use goat than lamb. what do you think the cooking time variation should be with goat? it'll take longer than 40 minutes at 350f, but there's also the rice to worry about. perhaps cook the goat halfway first?

also, does anyone know if green papaya paste is available commercially?

#21 Jason Perlow

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 02:21 PM

hey monica, lets hear your take on the biryani

:biggrin: You did such a nice job with it! I meant the difference in what Jason was describing and what a biryani is -- is about 5 more hours of cooking time

So are you saying most restaurants do not make biryani to order? They make several biryanis, taking 4 or 5 hours or so for each? Or is what restaurants serve characteristically different from what is served in the home? Is part of it pre-prepared and then they finish the dish to order?

I think it is understood that what someone serves at home may be much more elaborate sometimes.
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#22 mongo_jones

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 03:08 PM

jason, i don't think any of this has much to do with restaurants and homes as such. some of the best biryanis i've ever had in india are ones cooked in restaurants. in the u.s it may have more to do with the fact that the average non-south asian patron has a limited sense of what a biryani is (corroborated somewhat by the liberal definition of biryani in most of the recipes on that site), allowing lazy establishments to get away with all kinds of crap.

#23 bong

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Posted 03 October 2003 - 04:45 PM

bong, this recipe sounds good--however, i am likelier to use goat than lamb. what do you think the cooking time variation should be with goat?

Sorry, I'd forgotten to mention. I also always use goat meat. Have never used lamb. And I actually use bone-in goat meat. I find bone-in to be tastier and also get to suck on the marrow...

And I then steam the rice (using basmati rice -- soak rice for 30mins, drain the water and hand wash the rice a few times to get rid of rice powder or starch, add back 1.5 times hot water to rice; bring to boil, cover and lower heat and let steam for 5-10 minutes) for about 5-10 minutes. I then add this half-cooked rice to the meat and put it in the oven for 45mins-1 hour.

Believe it or not 45mins-1hr is quite sufficient for the meat. Its because of the papaya paste (or meat tenderizer) that's added to the meat while its marinating.

Green Papaya is difficult to find over here in the USA, so I just use store bought meat-tenderisers (which typically have papain, which is an extract from papaya) instead.

Usual disclaimer: Of course the time will vary depending on the size and cut of the meat, the type of cooking vessel you're using, the accuracy of your oven etc.

#24 prasad2

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Posted 04 October 2003 - 08:09 AM

also, does anyone know if green papaya paste is available commercially?


You may use raw papaya. Just peel and paste.

Edited by prasad2, 04 October 2003 - 08:13 AM.


#25 prasad2

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Posted 04 October 2003 - 08:12 AM

bong, this recipe sounds good--however, i am likelier to use goat than lamb. what do you think the cooking time variation should be with goat?


Usual disclaimer: Of course the time will vary depending on the size and cut of the meat, the type of cooking vessel you're using, the accuracy of your oven etc.

Baby Goat :sad: cooks pretty good and as fast as tender fresh lamb.

#26 heidih

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Posted 13 August 2013 - 02:55 PM

Hassouini I think he means cooking it either in the crock pot or in some sort of clay vessel - at least that is what google thinks ;)

http://www.thefrugal...ck-pot-biryani/ (crock pot)

(clay vessel)

Not sure what distinguishes it in a positive way from "regularly cooked".

#27 JoNorvelleWalker

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Posted 13 August 2013 - 10:00 PM

Odd, last night I was just thinking about biryani (or bryani, as I spelled it) though I have not made it in years.  The recipe I use is from The Yogi Cookbook, Yogi Vithaldas and Susan Roberts, Crown Publishers, 1968, pp 36-38.  Why Vithaldas and Roberts spell it "bryani" I have no idea.

 

Their recipe has no meat.  When I was in graduate school I surveyed my Indian acquaintances (of which there were two) whether bryani was made with meat?  One told me bryani could not be made with meat.  The other told me bryani could not be made without meat.  What I prefer to do is make bryani by the Vithaldas and Roberts recipe (without meat) and serve grilled lamb on the side.

 

Chicken biryani would not have occurred to me.



#28 Tiya Saha

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Posted 24 April 2014 - 12:31 AM

easy recipe for dum Biryani: 

ingredients: Whole garam Masala (green cardamon, black cardamon, cinnamon, bay leaf, clove, black pepper),

mint leaf,

chopped corriender

curd,

ginger garlic paste,

sliced onion,

chicken,

oil

salt 

roasted cumin powder

roasted coriander powder 

red chilli powder

edible orange color

 

preparation:

1. soak rice for at least 1/2 an hour

2. marinate the chicken for at least 1 hrs with ginger garlic paste, curd, roasted cumin powder, roasted coriander powder, red chilli powder.

3. put oil in the vessel you want the biryani to be cooked, put oil, fry the sliced onion till red. take it out & keep it aside.

4. now put some more oil in the vessel, all whole garam masala, put ginger garlic paste, stir it for 2 min in low flame, than put the marinated chicken to it & add salt to taste, cook it for atleast 5 min.

5. boil water separately, add salt to it. 

6. now we have to make layers, wherein the chicken is already placed, put some mint leaf, fried onion, & the soaked rice, finally put all the remaining mint leaf & fried onions & fianally chopped corriender, put the boil water till the rice layer, cover the same with heavy lid, as no air can pass, & the same get cooked in dum. leave it on a low flame, for atleast 30 min. 

7. uncover the vessel, & add some edible color(mix with water) to it. your biryani's ready, 

 

kindly note that its not a book recipe. i do cook biryani, in the same manner at home, its yummy. 







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