Note to self: Biryani is the holy grail of Pakistani cuisine. No one makes it better than yo mamma and there have been feuds over whose biryani ranks supreme. I know for most people biryani is a special occasion kind of meal… isn’t made often because of all the effort it takes but the best part about this recipe is that you can double up on the sauce/chicken portion and then freeze half of it for next time. Then all you’ll have to do is defrost, make the rice and then bake! That way you can have biryani whenever your heart desires!
Look at that deliciousness!
On a side note: I love seeing memes of biryani…or well memes in general…but there’s a special place for biryani memes. 🙂
For the chicken:
- ½ of a whole chicken (8 pieces) => (1 whole chicken is 16 pieces)
- 4 tsp salt
For the sauce:
- 2 medium onions sliced
- ¼ cup canola or vegetable oil
- 1 cup pureed tomatoes
- 2 cups of water
- 1 cup of yogurt
- 1 tbsp garlic
- ½ tbsp ginger paste
- 1 packet of Lazeez Asian Cuisine Chicken Biryani spice mix
For the rice:
- 12 cups water
- 3 cups of Basmati rice (rinsed 3x and soaked for 30 min-1 hour)
- 4 tsp oil
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 12 peppercorns
- 2-3 tbsp salt
- Cooked chicken mixture
- Cooked rice
- ½ – ¾ cup fried onions
- Orange food coloring (optional)
- Minced cilantro (As a garnish)
- In a medium sauce pan add 8-9 pieces of chicken, 4 tsp salt and cover with water over med-high heat until you see the fat accumulate at the top. Then turn off heat, skim fat and remove chicken.
- Place 3 cups of Basmati rice in a large bowl and rinse 3x to remove extra starches and impurities. Then cover with water and let it soak for 30 min – 1 hour.
- In a large pot heat ¼ cup oil to medium/medium high heat.
- Add 2 sliced onions and cook until lightly browned and translucent. (20-25 minutes)
- Add 1 cup pureed tomatoes to onions (I use whole peeled tomatoes from the can and use a blender to puree)
- Mix well and add the mixture in blender with 2 cups of water, 1 cup of plain yogurt, 2 tsp of garlic, and 1 tsp of ginger paste.
- Puree mixture and blend really well.
- Place puree into the same pot and cook on med-high heat until reduced and thickened. (~15-20 minutes)
- Add 1 packet of Lazeez Asian Cuisine Chicken Biryani spice mix
- Add chicken, coat well, cover, reduce heat to simmer and cook for 45 min-1 hour or until chicken is cooked.
- In another big pot bring 12 cups water to a boil.
- Add 4 tsp of oil, 12 peppercorns, 1 tsp cumin seeds, and 2-3 tbsp of salt to water.
- Drain water from rice (It should’ve been soaking for about 30 min-1hr) and place into pot of boiling water.
- Stir immediately so clumps don’t form.
- After 5 minutes drain rice.
- Place chicken into a deep casserole dish with half of the sauce mixture. (You can freeze the other half and use it when you want to make it again. Just add chicken, a bit of water and cook until chicken is done)
- Place ½ – ¾ cup fried onions over chicken. Then the cooked rice.
- Add 4 tsp of oil, and a squirt of orange food coloring.
- Cover with foil and a lid and cook for 25 minutes.
- When ready, mix and top with minced cilantro. (Optional: Add a sprinkle of chaat masala if you want it to be spicier)