Chicken Biryani

Chicken
 500 g boneless chicken thighs
 225 g natural Greek yoghurt
 2 tsp garlic paste
 2 tsp ginger paste
 ½ tsp salt
 2 large onions peeled and chopped
 6 green cardamoms
 1 ½ tsp ground cumin
 1 ½ tsp ground coriander
 1 tsp red chilli powder
 ½ tsp garam masala
 200 ml water
 3 tbsp sunflower oil or vegetable ghee
Rice
 450 g basmati rice
 1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
 3 large black cardamoms
 1 tsp black peppercorns
 2 bay leaves
 2 cloves
 ½ tsp black cumin seeds
 pinch of grated nutmeg (optional)
 50 g unsalted butter
 1 large onion (for garnish)
 sunflower oil
 fresh coriander leaves
 pinch of saffron threads
 salt to taste
 100 ml tepid water
 1 tsp Kewra (orris) water - optional (available in most Asian grocery stores)
1

Cut the chicken thighs into bite size pieces and put the yoghurt into a bowl, add half of the quantities of the following: garlic, ginger, ½ tsp of salt, all the powdered spices and combine together. Cover and put aside for at least 30 minutes or longer if possible.

2

Sauté the onions for the chicken, in oil or ghee until golden in colour, remove with a slotted spoon and allow to cool. When the onions have cooled down, place the onions in a blender and blitz them down to a rough paste.

3

Crush the green cardamom seeds in a pestle and mortar to a coarse powder and add them to the onion paste.

4

Add the chicken pieces to the ghee or oil, in which you sautéed the onions, fry for 3 to 4 minutes until golden, turning often. Add the remaining quantity of the garlic, ginger, red chilli powder, ground coriander, ground cumin and salt, whilst stirring add a splash of water to prevent the spices from sticking to the pan and cook for a minute, pour in the yoghurt and stir to mix all the ingredients together, cook over a low heat for 30 to 35 minutes, stir often and ensure that the pan does not get dry, splash a bit of water if required. Cover and continue to cook until the chicken is nearly tender with a thick sauce.

5

For the crisp fried onions, heat the sunflower oil in a deep pan over a medium heat and fry the onions for 10-15 minutes, until they are a deep golden brown, then using a slotted spoon, drain on absorbent kitchen paper and keep aside.

6

Rinse the rice with cold water in a colander with three changes of water and drain.

7

Soak the saffron threads in 4 tbsp of tepid water and put aside.

8

Put 4 cups of water into a saucepan and add all the whole spices, nutmeg and salt then bring to almost boiling point, add the rice and cook for 5 minutes, ensuring not to overcook the rice, strain into a large colander.

9

Spread out half the rice in the bottom of a heavy based pan and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the saffron water over the rice. Then put a layer of the chicken with its thick sauce. Then cover with a layer of the remaining rice and sprinkle the top with the rest of the saffron water and stir it through gently, ensuring not to disturb the layer of chicken below.

10

Dot the top of the rice with small knobs of butter, sprinkle the kewra (orris) water and the chopped coriander, cover with lightly buttered foil, then with the lid.

11

Put the pan on the hob on a low heat for 30 minutes.

12

Lift the lid to check that you can see the steam rising from the rice.

13

Complete the biryani by garnishing the top with the crispy fried onions and chopped coriander.

14

Serve with cucumber and mint raita.

CategoryCuisineCooking Method

Ingredients

Chicken
 500 g boneless chicken thighs
 225 g natural Greek yoghurt
 2 tsp garlic paste
 2 tsp ginger paste
 ½ tsp salt
 2 large onions peeled and chopped
 6 green cardamoms
 1 ½ tsp ground cumin
 1 ½ tsp ground coriander
 1 tsp red chilli powder
 ½ tsp garam masala
 200 ml water
 3 tbsp sunflower oil or vegetable ghee
Rice
 450 g basmati rice
 1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
 3 large black cardamoms
 1 tsp black peppercorns
 2 bay leaves
 2 cloves
 ½ tsp black cumin seeds
 pinch of grated nutmeg (optional)
 50 g unsalted butter
 1 large onion (for garnish)
 sunflower oil
 fresh coriander leaves
 pinch of saffron threads
 salt to taste
 100 ml tepid water
 1 tsp Kewra (orris) water - optional (available in most Asian grocery stores)

Directions

1

Cut the chicken thighs into bite size pieces and put the yoghurt into a bowl, add half of the quantities of the following: garlic, ginger, ½ tsp of salt, all the powdered spices and combine together. Cover and put aside for at least 30 minutes or longer if possible.

2

Sauté the onions for the chicken, in oil or ghee until golden in colour, remove with a slotted spoon and allow to cool. When the onions have cooled down, place the onions in a blender and blitz them down to a rough paste.

3

Crush the green cardamom seeds in a pestle and mortar to a coarse powder and add them to the onion paste.

4

Add the chicken pieces to the ghee or oil, in which you sautéed the onions, fry for 3 to 4 minutes until golden, turning often. Add the remaining quantity of the garlic, ginger, red chilli powder, ground coriander, ground cumin and salt, whilst stirring add a splash of water to prevent the spices from sticking to the pan and cook for a minute, pour in the yoghurt and stir to mix all the ingredients together, cook over a low heat for 30 to 35 minutes, stir often and ensure that the pan does not get dry, splash a bit of water if required. Cover and continue to cook until the chicken is nearly tender with a thick sauce.

5

For the crisp fried onions, heat the sunflower oil in a deep pan over a medium heat and fry the onions for 10-15 minutes, until they are a deep golden brown, then using a slotted spoon, drain on absorbent kitchen paper and keep aside.

6

Rinse the rice with cold water in a colander with three changes of water and drain.

7

Soak the saffron threads in 4 tbsp of tepid water and put aside.

8

Put 4 cups of water into a saucepan and add all the whole spices, nutmeg and salt then bring to almost boiling point, add the rice and cook for 5 minutes, ensuring not to overcook the rice, strain into a large colander.

9

Spread out half the rice in the bottom of a heavy based pan and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the saffron water over the rice. Then put a layer of the chicken with its thick sauce. Then cover with a layer of the remaining rice and sprinkle the top with the rest of the saffron water and stir it through gently, ensuring not to disturb the layer of chicken below.

10

Dot the top of the rice with small knobs of butter, sprinkle the kewra (orris) water and the chopped coriander, cover with lightly buttered foil, then with the lid.

11

Put the pan on the hob on a low heat for 30 minutes.

12

Lift the lid to check that you can see the steam rising from the rice.

13

Complete the biryani by garnishing the top with the crispy fried onions and chopped coriander.

14

Serve with cucumber and mint raita.

Chicken Biryani
Nutrition Facts

Servings 4

Ingredients

Chicken
 500 g boneless chicken thighs
 225 g natural Greek yoghurt
 2 tsp garlic paste
 2 tsp ginger paste
 ½ tsp salt
 2 large onions peeled and chopped
 6 green cardamoms
 1 ½ tsp ground cumin
 1 ½ tsp ground coriander
 1 tsp red chilli powder
 ½ tsp garam masala
 200 ml water
 3 tbsp sunflower oil or vegetable ghee
Rice
 450 g basmati rice
 1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
 3 large black cardamoms
 1 tsp black peppercorns
 2 bay leaves
 2 cloves
 ½ tsp black cumin seeds
 pinch of grated nutmeg (optional)
 50 g unsalted butter
 1 large onion (for garnish)
 sunflower oil
 fresh coriander leaves
 pinch of saffron threads
 salt to taste
 100 ml tepid water
 1 tsp Kewra (orris) water - optional (available in most Asian grocery stores)

DIRECTIONS

1

Cut the chicken thighs into bite size pieces and put the yoghurt into a bowl, add half of the quantities of the following: garlic, ginger, ½ tsp of salt, all the powdered spices and combine together. Cover and put aside for at least 30 minutes or longer if possible.

2

Sauté the onions for the chicken, in oil or ghee until golden in colour, remove with a slotted spoon and allow to cool. When the onions have cooled down, place the onions in a blender and blitz them down to a rough paste.

3

Crush the green cardamom seeds in a pestle and mortar to a coarse powder and add them to the onion paste.

4

Add the chicken pieces to the ghee or oil, in which you sautéed the onions, fry for 3 to 4 minutes until golden, turning often. Add the remaining quantity of the garlic, ginger, red chilli powder, ground coriander, ground cumin and salt, whilst stirring add a splash of water to prevent the spices from sticking to the pan and cook for a minute, pour in the yoghurt and stir to mix all the ingredients together, cook over a low heat for 30 to 35 minutes, stir often and ensure that the pan does not get dry, splash a bit of water if required. Cover and continue to cook until the chicken is nearly tender with a thick sauce.

5

For the crisp fried onions, heat the sunflower oil in a deep pan over a medium heat and fry the onions for 10-15 minutes, until they are a deep golden brown, then using a slotted spoon, drain on absorbent kitchen paper and keep aside.

6

Rinse the rice with cold water in a colander with three changes of water and drain.

7

Soak the saffron threads in 4 tbsp of tepid water and put aside.

8

Put 4 cups of water into a saucepan and add all the whole spices, nutmeg and salt then bring to almost boiling point, add the rice and cook for 5 minutes, ensuring not to overcook the rice, strain into a large colander.

9

Spread out half the rice in the bottom of a heavy based pan and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the saffron water over the rice. Then put a layer of the chicken with its thick sauce. Then cover with a layer of the remaining rice and sprinkle the top with the rest of the saffron water and stir it through gently, ensuring not to disturb the layer of chicken below.

10

Dot the top of the rice with small knobs of butter, sprinkle the kewra (orris) water and the chopped coriander, cover with lightly buttered foil, then with the lid.

11

Put the pan on the hob on a low heat for 30 minutes.

12

Lift the lid to check that you can see the steam rising from the rice.

13

Complete the biryani by garnishing the top with the crispy fried onions and chopped coriander.

14

Serve with cucumber and mint raita.