Chicken Biryani

Here’s a easy recipe for a tasty biryani!
Easy, because it isn’t as elaborate as the traditional way of making this dish.. and it tastes as good as the original..
Chicken Biryani

Here are the ingredients —

Chicken – 1/2 kg (or more if you like chicken) – medium sized pieces
Onions – 2 big ones, cut into thin slices and deep-fried till crisp
Potatoes – 2 big ones, cut into long thin fingers and deep fried
(The fried onions and potatoes are optional, especially if you want to avoid the oil. Another option is to microwave the potatoes & onions separately.)
Basmati rice – 400 gm, soaked for atleast 30 minutes
Tomatoes – 3-4 medium ones, grated
Onions – 3-4 big ones, grated
Coriander leaves – 1 1/2 cup, chopped finely
Mint leaves – 1 cup, chopped finely
Thick curd – 1 cup, best if a little sour
Juice of one lemon
Cumin powder – 2 tbsp
Coriander powder – 2 tbsp
Garam masala – 2 tbsp
Asafoetida – 1 tbsp
Turmeric powder – 1 tbsp
Pepper powder – 2 tbsp
Chilli powder – 4 tbsp
Ginger garlic paste – 4 tbsp
Green chillies – 2-3, chopped finely
Saffron – few strands stirred in warm milk
Salt – as per taste
Everest Biryani Masala – 3-4 tbsp
Cloves – 4-5
Cinnamon – 2″stick
Green cardamom – 4-5
Mace – a small piece
Black cardamom – 2
Bay leaves – 3-4 leaves
Oil as required
Ghee as required

1. The method is fairly simple, the main part being the marinade. Make a mix of 3/4 th of the lemon juice, curd (save a couple of tbsps for later), salt, 1/2 of the coriander leaves, 1/4 cup mint leaves, cumin powder, coriander powder, garam masala, asafoetida, turmeric, pepper, chili powder, 2 tbsp ginger garlic paste and green chilies.
2. Add the washed chicken pieces and keep it in the refrigerator for at least for 2-3 hrs (the longer the better).
3. Heat 4-5 tbsp of oil in heavy bottomed kadai and add the marinated chicken pieces. Fry on a high flame till the chicken becomes dry.
4. Once cooked, get the chicken pieces out, leaving the marinade in the kadai.
5. To this add the remaining 2 tbsp ginger garlic paste, fry for a bit.
6. Then add the grated onions and fry till they change color.
7. Add the grated tomatoes and fry till the oil separates.
8. Now add 3-4 tsps Everest Biryani masala and fry for a few seconds, then add the fried chicken pieces. If the mixture is too dry add a little water and cook for few minutes.
9. Take a deep bottomed vessel and heat 2 tbsps of ghee.
10. Add the cloves, cinnamon sticks, green cardamom, mace, black cardamom and bay leaves.
11. Then put in the basmati rice and fry till it changes colour.
12. Add enough water, salt and the remaining lemon juice.
13. Cook till the rice is almost done and each grain is separate. Spread the rice on a plate and let it cool.
14. Now for the layering that makes a biryani. In a big flat-bottomed vessel smear 3 tbsps of ghee. Depending upon the size of the vessel decide on the number of layers that you could fit in it. Atleast 2 layers each of chicken and rice is what we recommend.
15. After a layer of the chicken, top it with a layer of rice followed by a few tsps of curd, some chopped coriander, some chopped mint leaves, potato fingers, fried onions, some of the saffron milk and a little ghee.
16. Continue the layering till rice is the top most layer, with a layer of all the toppings.
17. Cover with a tight lid, seal if required with dough.
18. Heat a heavy gridle/tawa on the flame and then place the vessel of biryani on it. Cook for 10 – 15 mins and your biryani is ready…