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    This is a light biryani (less masala), hence should appeal to all taste buds.

Total Time: 1 hr

For Yakhni (stock)

1 1/2 kg chicken (cut into pieces) or 1 1/2 kg mutton/lamb (cut into pieces)
5-6 cups water
2 teaspoon salt
1 medium onion (peeled & cut in two pieces)
1 teaspoon clove (laung)
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorn (sabut kali mirch)
4 black cardamom pods (bari elaichi)
4 cinnamon sticks (dalchini)
3 bay leaf (tez patta)
10-12 garlic cloves (Lehsan)
4 inches ginger (adrak)
2 teaspoon coriander seed (sukha dhaniya)
2 pinch ground nutmeg (jaifal)
1/2 teaspoon anise (javetri)

For Masala (curry)

1/2 cup oil (prefer olive oil)
2-3 medium onion (thinly sliced)
2-3 teaspoon cumin seed (zeera)
2 1/2 teaspoons ginger-garlic paste
1 medium tomato (chopped)
1 cup yogurt
1-2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon red chili powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder
2 teaspoon garam masala powder
4 green cardamoms (choti elaichi)
1-2 1/2 teaspoons ground aniseed (saunf)
2-4 tablespoon mint leaf, coriander and green chilli (chopped)

4 cups basmati rice (soaked in water for at least 20-30 mins)

Directions (patience is key to success):

Prep Time: 10 mins

  • Trim most of the fat from the meat. Wash thoroughly with cold water. Put water in a large heavy based saucepan and bring to boil.
  • Tie aniseed and coriander seed in a piece of muslin to make spice bag (you can add whole spices in it if you want to avoid them being chewed by accident while eating!).
  • Mix all ingredients for yakhni.
  • Bring them to a boil & let them boil on medium high heat for 20 minutes or till the lamb gets tender (slow cooking helps).
  • Strain the yakhni only leaving the lamb in it.

    Fry the onions till golden

  • In pan heat oil, add sliced onions & fry the onions till they turn golden brown.
  • Take 1/4 out of it & keep aside.
  • Now add cumin seeds (zeera), ginger garlic paste, tomatoes, salt, red chilly powder to the remaining fried onions & stir-fry for 3-4 minutes.
  • Next add yogurt, garam masala and green cardamom (choti elaichi).
  • Cook on medium high heat till the tomatoes get tender.
  • Add the bag, lamb pieces to the masala & let it simmer for another 2-4 minutes.
  • Yakhni (Stock): Cook the lamb with masala and yoghurt

    Finally pour the masala in the yakhni, already back in the cooking pot.

  • Discard the spices bag from meat then add rice & cook it uncovered on high heat for 5 minutes or till the water “almost” dries up.

Sprinkle the fried onions & mint leaves.

Close the pot by tightly covering the pot with foil just where the lid goes making sure no steam escapes (Dum dena).

Cook on low heat for 15-20 minutes or till the rice is done.

Enjoy with chutney/cucumber raita.