Thursday, August 17, 2017

Quick & Easy Chicken Biryani

Chicken Biryani
Fluff with a fork to reveal the
pretty orange hue of the saffron
Here is a really quick & easy way to make biryani which is served on festive occasions. Our cause for celebration was to break a fast from eating bland food because Hubby was suffering from a digestive ailment. If you've read my past posts on the subject, they will seem labor-intensive - see Chicken Biryani and 

Served with Shrimp Curry
Choto Alu'r Dum
We had this biryani with Shrimp Curry and Alu Dum, but it tastes great accompanied by a salad or raita.

2 cups Basmati rice, washed, soaked in water for 30 minutes and drained well
10-12 baby potatoes, peeled
6-8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut in bite-sized pieces
1/2 cup birista or deep-fried onions, crushed
1/4 cup deep-fried garlic
2 Tbsp. Shan Pilau/Biryani mix, sifted & solids set aside
1 (6 oz.) tub Greek yogurt

4 Tbsp. vegetable oil
4-5 bay leaves
1/2 tsp. Shah jeera
1/2 cup deep-fried onions
2 tsp. ginger-garlic paste

3-1/2 cups simmering chicken broth
2 Tbsp. Shan Pilau/Biryani mix
1/2 cup mint, chopped

1/2 tsp. saffron, crushed
2 Tbsp. ghee
1 cup deep-fried onions or birista


  1. Marinate chicken in next 4 ingredients for half an hour.
  2. Sift pulao/biryani masala in a tea strainer over a plate and set solids aside.
  3. Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a  skillet over medium-high heat, brown potatoes and set aside.
  4. In the same skillet, heat 2 more tablespoons oil, sputter sifted solids from pulao/biryani masala, remove solids from oil, enclose in a tea ball or tie in cheesecloth and set aside.
  5. In the same oil, sputter Shah jeera and bay leaves, add 1/2 cup birista and stir-fry for 2 minutes.
  6. Add ginger-garlic paste, 2 Tbsp. sifted biryani masala along with potatoes and chicken pieces.
  7. Stir well and simmer over medium heat for 20 minutes until chicken is tender.
  8. Transfer cooked chicken and juices to a large saucepan in an even layer.
  9. Scatter drained rice over chicken and potatoes. 
  10. Pour simmering chicken broth around edges, along with 2 Tbsp. sifted biryani mix and mint but do not stir.
  11. Submerge the tea ball or cheesecloth bundle in the broth.
  12. Turn heat down to low, cover saucepan and simmer for 30 minutes without lifting the lid.
  13. Scatter crushed saffron and ghee over cooked rice, cover and allow to rest for 10 minutes.
Garnish with more birista and serve with a salad or raita.

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