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Marinade for chicken biryani

Whole spices (skip if you don't have any)

Other ingredients for chicken biryani

½ kg chicken (1.l lbs)

3 tablespoons plain yogurt (curd or dahi)

1¼ tablespoons ginger garlic paste (1 inch ginger & 4 garlic cloves crushed)

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon turmeric

½ to 1 teaspoon red chilli powder (or paprika) (use less spicy variety)

½ to 1 tablespoon garam masala (or biryani masala) (Refer notes)

1 tablespoon Lemon juice (optional)

Whole spices (skip if you don't have any)

1 bay leaf (tej patta)

4 green cardamoms (choti elaichi)

6 cloves (lavang)

1 inch cinnamon (dalchini)

1 star anise (chakri phool )

¾ teaspoon shahi jeera (caraway seeds) (substitute with cumin)

1 strand mace (javitri)

Other ingredients for chicken biryani

2 cups basmati rice (aged rice only)

2 tablespoon ghee or Oil

1 large onion sliced thinly

¼ to ½ cup mint leaves chopped fine (about 15 leaves)

1 green chili (slit or chopped)

¼ cup plain yogurt (Indian curd)

¼ to ½ teaspoon red chili powder (optional, for heat)

1 teaspoon garam masala (or biryani masala)

3 cups water (or coconut milk) (refer notes more if needed )

¾ teaspoon salt (to stir in water)

2 tablespoon fried onions (optional)

1 pinch saffron (optional)(soaked in 2 tbsps hot milk)


Preparation for chicken biryani

1. To a bowl, add yogurt, ginger garlic paste, ½ tsp salt, garam masala, turmeric, lemon

juice & red chili powder.

2. Mix up well and taste the marinade. Add more salt and spice if needed.

3. Make slits on the chicken pieces. Add it to the marinade &mix well. Cover and set aside

for 1 hour to overnight.

4. Rinse basmati rice thrice and soak for 30 mins. Drain to a colander after 30 mins.

How to make chicken biryani

1. Heat ghee or oil in a pot or pressure cooker.

2. Add whole spices - bay leaf, cardamoms, cloves, cinnamon, star anise, shahi jeera &

mace. Skip them if you do not have.

3. When the spices begin to sizzle, add onions & fry them evenly stirring often until

uniformly light brown but not burnt.

4. Add chicken & saute until pale for 5 mins on a medium heat.

5. Cover & cook on a low flame until the chicken is soft cooked or tender. Saute to

evaporate any excess moisture in the pot.

6. Taste test and add more salt if needed. I add about ¼ teaspoon salt. Add ¼ cup yogurt

(curd), 2 tablespoons chopped mint leaves, 1 slit green chili, ½ to 1 teaspoon red chili

powder & 1 teaspoon garam masala.

Layering for chicken biryani

1. Mix everything well and layer chicken evenly at the bottom. (check video)

2. Spread drained rice in a layer over the chicken.

3. To a separate bowl, pour 3 cups water. If cooking in a pot use 3 ½ cups water.

4. Add ½ to ¾ tsp salt and mix. Taste the water. It must be slightly salty.

5. Pour 2 cups of this water across the sides of the cooker or pot. Gently pour the rest on

top of the rice. (check video)

6. Level the rice if needed. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons mint leaves. Optionally add 2

tablespoons fried onions & saffron soaked milk if using.

7. Pot method - If cooking in a pot, cover and cook on a low flame until the chicken

biryani is done to your liking. If the rice is still under cooked or hard, pour ¼ to ½ cup

boiling water and cook further. When done it has to be fully cooked, yet remain grainy.

8. Cooker method - Set the flame to medium high. Cover & place the whistle. Cook for 1

whistle. Move the cooker away from the burner to stop cooking further.

9. Rest until the pressure settles. Fluff up the chicken biryani with a fork.

10. Serve from top to the bottom layer. Each serving gets biryani rice from top and chicken

from the bottom layer.

11. Enjoy chicken biryani with raita and sliced veggies, papad and shorba (biryani gravy).

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