After the success of my maiden attempt of Hyderabadi Mutton Dum Biryani, I was eager than ever to prepare it again for a special Sunday lunch affair, this time with Chicken.
Now, preparing this dish has ceased to be a daunting task like before as long as I have all the ingredients ready. This time, I felt I should have added more meat to make it kind of 1.5:1 ratio of meat and rice. But otherwise we didn’t miss the biryani at all from our favourite joint and won’t be missing it for a long long time now that I can prepare a better and fresher version at home with the right quantity of spices in a jiffy!
This time, I increased the quantity of saffron to deepen the yellow colour and fragrance. I also added Kewra essence – just a few drops. If you don’t have saffron in stock, you can always use the yellow food colour but then you will miss out on this amazing aroma so don’t skip it!
You wouldn’t normally need any side dish with biryani but you can always serve it with a yoghurt dip or Raita. I had a Mint yoghurt chutney with my biryani.
This version of Chicken Biryani is the one most commonly served in restaurants.
So, here is the recipe below.
Chicken Dum Biryani
Source: Yummy Tummy
- Basmati Rice – 1/2 kg or 2 cups
- Chicken – 750g
- Oil – 1/2 cup
- Red Onions – 2 large, thinly sliced
- Saffron – a pinch
- Warm Milk – 1/4 cup
- Coriander leaves – 2 tbsp, finely chopped
- Mint Leaves – 2 tbsp, finely chopped
- Ghee – 2 tbsp
- Cashews – 3 tbsp
- Kishmish / Sultanas – 3 tbsp
- Kewra Essence – few drops
- Salt to taste
FOR THE MARINADE:
- Coriander Powder – 1.5 tbsp
- Salt to taste
- Coriander leaves – 1/4 cup chopped finely
- Mint Leaves – 1/4 cup chopped finely
- Thick Curd – 1.5 cup
- Green Chillies – 3 broken into big pieces
- Ginger Garlic Paste – 1.5 tbsp
- Biryani Masala Powder – recipe below (about 2 tbsp) – You can use the store-bought ones like I did.
- Lemon Juice – 1 tbsp
BIRYANI MASALA POWDER:
- Cloves – 5
- Cardamom – 5
- Bay Leaf – 2
- Cinnamon – 5 cm piece
- Cumin Seeds – 1/2 tbsp
- Black Stone Flower – 2 piece
- Star Anise – 1
- Fennel Seeds / Saunf – 1/2 tbsp
- Prepare the Biryani Masala powder: Skip this step if you are using the ready-made one like me. Else, dry roast all the ingredients given in the list for Biryani masala on a low flame till they get toasted and release their aroma. Let it cool a bit, and then grind to a fine powder. Set aside.
- Marinate the chicken: Add all the ingredients for the marinade to the chicken and mix and rub it in well. Marinate for 2 hours or overnight. Before preparing the biryani, let it come to room temperature.
- Wash the rice thoroughly and soak it for an hour. Drain and keep aside.
- Prepare the rice: Fill half a pot or dekchi with water and add salt to it. Let it come to a boil and then add the rice to it. Cook it for about 5-7 minutes or till it is almost done – it has to have a bite or al-dente texture. Don’t cook it till mushy. Do keep an eye on it when it is cooking.
- Prepare the Biryani toppings: I used a 5-litre large pressure cooker vessel for this but you can use a handi or a dekchi or any heavy bottomed pan for cooking the biryani on dum. Use this same vessel to fry your toppings. Heat some oil and add the onions to it. Fry it on low heat till it caramelises and turns crisp and golden brown. This takes time and patience. Drain and set aside. Soak the saffron in some warm milk. Heat ghee (clarified butter) in a pan and fry the cashews and raisins till golden. Drain and set aside.
- Next, add the chicken along with the marinade to the same vessel where you fried the onions and stir it to mix for about 5 minutes.
- Prepare the layers: Now, over the chicken mixture, add the rice in a layer. Top with the fried onions, chopped herbs (mint and coriander leaves), fried nuts, saffron milk, some dollops of ghee and the kewra essence. Line the vessel rim with foil and cover such that the steam cannot escape and cover the vessel with a steel plate and over it place a heavy weight. I placed my heavy mortar-pestle. Lower the flame to the lowest and cook this way on dum for about 30-35 minutes. You can place the vessel over a skillet or tawa to avoid the meat getting burnt.
- After the stipulated cooking time, switch off the gas and let it stand for about 15 minutes.
- Open the lid and fluff the rice and chicken lightly.
- Serve with a yoghurt dip or Raita. I served with a Mint-coriander-curd chutney.
- Exhale in the different aromas and dig in heartily!