Monday, 8 December 2014

One Of Those Briyani Days...

You know there are some days when you would feel like having just rasam and dhal.  And there are others when you feel like having food bursting with flavours. And then there are other days you would like to pinpoint that bursting-with-flavours dish to be briyani.
Our most recent weekend was one of those days.

A beautiful weekend; and became more beautiful when AZ suggested I make lunch. These days, while I try and complete most of the housework on weekends, Mum still prefers to be ruling the kitchen. But today, getting up earlier than usual (only on weekends) and wrapping up weekly chores gave me more time to prepare dinner (because we had an early lunch too).

Mum decided on chicken; and I decided on briyani. I have long wanted to prepare a really spicy and simple at the same time,  chicken briyani. Erm...don't we all want to do that?

After looking up a few recipes online, I didn't quite find what I had in mind. I surrendered and went to  Mum. When the best cook's always with us, why do I sometimes turn to the Internet?

I have a few reasons. I only look up new versions once I have learnt Mum's variations well. I look up online, like most ladies who cook, for inspirations on variations. But briyani is different on this standard. Only because Mum's briyanis are too complex. She makes dum briyanis - where the rice and briyani masala curry are cooked separately.

That day, we both - Mum and I were in the quick-cooking mood. Looking at my dismay on not finding a recipe that we could try out, she dished out her own. It was some steps she has not tried before.

This is the simple recipe we cooked up.

To marinate first
1/2 kg of chicken
(all measures are generous portions here)
2 tsp tumeric powder
1tbsp garam masala
1 tbsp briyani masala
3-4 tbsp coriander powder
1 tbsp cumin powder
5 tbsp chilli powder/ chilli paste
1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
2 tbsp vegetable oil
salt to taste
half cup of lime juice/yoghurt
4-5 bay leaves

We left the mixture to marinate for  1 hour; the longer, the better it should be.

Cooking Method
1/2 tsp food colouring
1 tbsp rosewater
2 tbsp ghee
3-4 bay leaves
set of spices - cinnamon sticks, star anises, cardamom
serai - 1 or 2
evaporated milk, with 2 -3 strands of saffron
2 onions
2 tomatoes
2 green chillies
2 cups basmati rice : 3cups of water
fresh yoghurt to taste
salt to taste
fried onions
coriander and mint leaves
1 tbsp of ginger and garlic paste

After cooking for half an hour, Alhamdhulilah, the result was as below.
Mum and I added a tad too much water (the amount stated above is the correct version).
Otherwise, the taste was as I hoped for - bursting with flavours.
Serving up a plate below.

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