Chicken Biryani


Another six months, another post. Christmas is drawing near yet again and I find myself with an hour to kill despite the fact that I still have 70% of my Christmas shopping to do. Saying that, it’s far too late to do anything about it now – they’ll just have to make do with a jar of homemade chutney or something.

And speaking of chutney – how about this? I cooked it for the shorts a few weeks ago and it instantly became my favourite curry dish…

Chicken Biryani (with wild and basmati rice), Dhal and Yoghurt 

Start by boiling the wild rice in salted water for about 15 minutes (it takes much longer than white rice to cook) and then wash it and set it aside.

In the meantime, take your biggest casserole dish and fry a couple of onions, at least 10 cloves of garlic and two thumbs of ginger, all finely chopped (actually, one of the onions I like to chop into slices so that you can see them in the dish). Throw in a few red and green chillies – as many as you can handle (you have to decide this one for yourself) and fry for a few minutes. Next add four roughly sliced chicken breasts and fry them in the same pan until brown but not fully cooked. Now add the spices. I would use at least the following: 5 cardamom pods, a tablespoon of each of coriander seeds, fennel seeds, cumin seeds, black peppercorns, sea salt and star anise. Grind them, heat them in a dry frying pan until they almost start to smoke in the heat and then throw into the casserole along with a whole cinnamon stick and a bay leaf.

Then add the wild rice along with the same amount of basmati rice along with boiling water (twice as much water as rice), two handfuls of raisins/sultanas and a chicken stock pot thingy. Let the whole lot come back to the boil and simmer for about 5 minutes.

Now take the casserole off the heat and leave it with the lid on for another 10 minutes. When you open the lid, the rice will have cooked and you’ll be left with a beautiful biryani. Throw a big bunch of chopped coriander (that’s cilantro to my US friends), give it a stir and you’re done.

Serve with Dhal (I’m pretty sure I’ve already covered that somewhere on this blog) and yoghurt (and rotis heated in a frying pan if you have them).

Apologies if you actually know how to make biryani – this is certainly wrong in many ways, but it tastes pretty good to me


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