Thursday, April 1, 2010

Chicken Biryani

The long overdue recipe for G's Biryani recipe is finally here! Biryani lover's rejoice...this dish has been showered with lot of praises, pat on the back and a many many smiles from DH. All thanks to SG for a great masala base....Banne Nawab Hydrabadi chicken biryani

Ingredients for marinade:
Chicken 5 lbs, cut, cleaned, bone intact
yogurt- 1 cup
Biryani masala- Banne Nawab
chilli powder- 1 tsp
ginger paste- 1 tsp
garlic paste- 1tsp
lemon juice- 3 tbsp of juice of one lemon

for layering
Rice, 4 cups, halfway cooked with whole garam masala, ghee and salt
Fried onions, 3 large onions, thinly sliced( I try to make a freshly batch but store brought will do if u r not as picky as me)
boiled eggs, about 8 ( cook in boiled water for exactly 5 mins), peel
cilantro and mint, chopped roughly
saffron- 2 tbsp soaked in 1/2 a cup of warm milk

Part 1, Mix up all spices and chicken, cover, refrigerate and let marination do the work overnight. If pressed for time, 4 hrs is minimum required time for good biryani, but I don't want it just good, I am after the best!

Part2, heat oil in a kadai, fry 3 large onions and set the onion aside to drain on a few paper towel. Remove excess oil from kadai, leaving abt 3 tbsp to roast the chicken. Brown the chiken, a few at a time without overcrowding the pan. The purpose here is to brown the surface to get a caramalised taste, at this point I am not worried about chicken not being cooked. Remove all the roasted chicken and set aside.To the kadai, add about cup of water to deglaze, stir constantly and gently add all the browned chiken. Cover, simmer and cook till done. Open and reduce any leftover liquid from the chicken on high heat.

Part 3, In a a heavy bottomed vessel, boil 6 cups of water, add whole garam masala ( 4 bay leaves,2 cloves, 4 cardamom pods, a couple pieces of cinnamon sticks,star anise, few peppercorns), 4 cups of rice, 4 tbsp ghee and salt. Cover and take off the heat to slow cook. In about 30 minutes all the water will have absorbed and the rice cooked halfway....just the way we want it.
Now, spread the rice on a large platter to cool off a little to prevent cooking further. Spoon the saffron milk at one tsp at a time, in about 6 places to color as well as flavor the rice. Do not mix further. A fork can be used to lightly rake the rice to get different shades of yellow from saffron.

Part 4, In a oven proof casserole/dish, layer in half the rice on the bottom, sprinkle 1/3 of cilantro and mint leaves, layer chicken, fried onion, boiled egg nestled between chicken and some more of cilantro mint leaves. Layer second half of rice, fried onions and cilantro mint leaves to completely cover the chicken. Cover the casserole with aluminium foil and bake.

Part 5 , Heat oven to 250F and place the biryani in the oven for about an hour. This final baking gives the 'DUM' effect, cooks the eggs and rice and the gets the chicken to flavor the dish to perfection.

*G's Note*: I let the chicken biryani sit in the oven for longer until it is time to serve since I do not recommend reheating the dish for obvious reasons while entertaining friends.