When we were in India earlier, Fridays used to be a day spent cleaning my “pooja room” the pictures, the pooja items and in the evening used to do my pooja with lots of flowers and the house used to have this heavenly feeling with the smell of flowers and camphor and agarbathis. This also meant the food cooked on Friday was vegetarian.
Now in Dubai, it’s just the opposite. We get our weekend on Friday and Saturday, so that means all that we do on a usual Sunday back home happens here on Friday.
So the usual Sunday biryani has become our Friday biryani. But this week made a slight change, made egg biryani, as I was in no mood to make any chicken or mutton biryani. It was’nt the usual heavy biryani but lighter but had all the flavor of the regular biryani.
So try this out..
Onions(sliced) – 4 nos
Tomatoes( sliced) – 3 nos
Ginger-garlic paste – 2 tbsp
Green chillies – 4-6 nos
Yoghurt – ½ cup
Mint leaves – ¼ cup
Coriander leaves(chopped) – ¼ cup
Red chilli powder – 1 tsp
Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
Lemon juice – 1 lemon
Basmati rice – 3 cups
Cloves – 4-6 nos
Cardamons – 4-6 nos
Cinnamon stick – 1”piece 2 nos
Bay leaves – 4-6 nos
Eggs (boiled) – 6 nos
Saffron a pinch soaked in warm milk
Salt as required
Oil and ghee for frying
To roast and grind:
Cloves – 5 nos
Cinnamon stick – 1”piece
Cardamons – 4 nos
Star anise – 1 no
Pepper – 1 tsp
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Wash and clean the basmati rice. Cook the basmati rice with salt and 1-2 pieces of all the whole garam masalas i.e. the cloves, cardamons, cinnamon, and bay leaves. When the rice is done, drain the water and set aside. (you can also cook the rice in any stock or add a stock cube to get extra flavor)
In a small pan, add the masalas to be roast and ground. Roast them for 5-8 minutes, till the smell arises. Remove from heat and grind to a powder. Keep aside.
Heat a large pan with the oil and ghee.
Add the remaining whole garam masalas and sauté.
Add the sliced onions and sauté till they are brown in color.
Now, add the ginger-garlic paste and green chillies, fry for 2-3 minutes, till the raw smell of the ginger-garlic paste has gone.
Now, add the tomatoes and sauté for 2-3 minutes, till the tomatoes are soft.
When they are soft, add the red chilli powder, turmeric powder and the freshly ground biryani masala and sauté.
Fry covered till the oil starts to separate from the gravy.
Now, add the yoghurt and mint leaves and mix well.
Season with salt.
Cook it well for 5-8 minutes and remove from heat.
If the vessel is large enough to hold the rice, use the same or else transfer the gravy to a wider pan.
Now, with the bottom layer as the gravy, you can either use the whole boiled egg or cut them in half and arrange them over the gravy.
Sprinkle a few mint leaves and some chopped coriander leaves over the gravy.
Now, Spread the cooked rice over gravy and eggs and cover the entire gravy below.
Pour the saffron soaked in warm milk over the rice.
Add the remaining mint leaves and coriander leaves over this.
Spread some deep fried onions over this and cover with a tight lid.
Heat an iron tawa on low heat and keep the entire vessel over this tawa.
Cook the biryani on low heat till the smell starts to arise. This would take approx. 20-30 minutes.
Remove from heat and combine gently.
Serve hot with raitha.