Recipe / Desi Thursdays

Kachi Biryani


• 1 kg mutton, cut into 2 inch pieces
• 1 kg very fine Basmati rice
• 100 gm ghee
3 onions, finely sliced
1 level tbsp ground raw papaya
• 1/4 kg curd
1 tsp red chilli paste (red chilli boiled and ground to a paste)
1 tsp garam masala powder
• 1 tsp ground caraway seeds (shah jeera)
2 tsp ground garlic
1 tsp ground ginger
4 cardamoms
4 cloves
2 sticks cinnamons (1 inch each)
• 1/4 lt milk
1 tsp saffron, ground with milk
1 bunch coriander leaves, chopped
1 bunch mint leaves, chopped
6 green chillies
Juice of 4 limes
• 1/2 kg wheat flour
1 tsp cardamom, powdered


This saffron-flavoured meat cooked with rice is the most famous biryani of Hyderabad

Heat ghee and fry onions till golden brown. Remove and crush half the onions. Rub papaya into mutton, add curd, red chilli, salt, garam masala, caraway seeds, garlic, ginger and crushed onions. Leave to marinate for an hour, mix well after about 25 minutes. Soak rice in water for 20 minutes.
Add cardamoms, cloves, cinnamon in water with salt and boil. Cook till rice is half done. Drain out water and keep 11/2 cups aside. Spread mutton at the bottom of a saucepan. Pour half the milk, 1 1/2 cups of rice water, fried onions with ghee, half the saffron milk coriander, mint leaves, green chillies and two-thirds of cardamom powder over the mutton. Spread remaining rice over this.
Sprinkle remaining saffron milk, cardamom powder, salt and lime juice over rice. Cover saucepan with a well-fitting lid and seal the edges by covering the rim with a mixture of dough, made with whole wheat flour and water into a stiff paste. Stand the pan on a moderate fire and let it cook till the liquid makes slight sounds inside.
Remove pan from heat. Lower heat, put a griddle on the flame and stand the pan on the griddle. Let it cook on this, or in low heat in the oven, for 30 to 40 minutes. To check if the meat is cooked, remove the dough and open the lid. Then stick a long-handled spoon into the pan. If you find liquid at the bottom, cook it a little longer till the liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat. Keep covered till you are ready to dish out the biryani onto a serving platter.
Serve with dahi ki chutney.

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