Chicken Biryani

Chicken Biryani

Biryani is a dish originally from South Asia consisting of rice with meat/ fish/ vegetables and various spices. The word Biryani from biriyān meaning 'fried, grilled'.
It is made from par boiled rice, which is then mixed with the other ingredients, sealed and put on "dum" (a very low heat, so that all the flavors inside the pot amalgamate well) for at least 45 minutes.
Chicken Biryani is by far the most popular Indian rice recipe around the globe.
Biryani Masala Powder is a spicy mix used to prepare fragrant Chicken-/ or vegetable Biryani rice. Nowadays you will find ready made powders and masala for Chicken Biryanis, but preparing a home made masala is very easy and authentic.
This recipe will show you how to first make an authentic Biryani Masala Powder. Once we have finished making the powder, we can start to marinate the chicken. This recipe is suitable for a Mid Spicy Biryani and has a good moderate aroma of spices. If you wish to have a mild tasting Biryani just leave out the red chillies. This powder-mix serves up to 3 Biryanis. To retain the aroma of the Biryani Masala Powder, you can portion small packs of foil in freezer and use when needed. This then lasts up to a year.
There is nothing worse than putting in all your 2 hours effort this dish requires and then getting the bottom of the casserole slightly burned. Which is exactly why you will need a solid heavy casserole for making biryani. Check here.
Please don't get intimidated by the long list of ingredients....

Jasmin Dhar


  1. 2 bay leaves
  2. 3 - 4 chillies dried red
  3. 2 tablespoons fennel seeds
  4. 2 star anise
  5. 2 cardamom green
  6. 1 cardamom black
  7. 2 cinnamom sticks
  8. 6 cloves
  9. 4 1/2 tablespoons coriander seeds ( or powder)
  10. 2 1/2 tablespoons jeera seeds
  11. 4 - 5 strands mace of flower
  12. 1 1/2 teaspoons nutmeg
  13. 600 g chicken breasts boneless ( 3-4 pieces)
  14. 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  15. 3 - 4 cloves garlic crushed
  16. 2 ginger pieces of root crushed
  17. 3 green chillies cut in pieces
  18. 1/2 cup yogurt
  19. 1/2 lemon juice a
  20. 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
  21. 1 teaspoon masala biryani powder
  22. to taste salt
  23. 1 teaspoon oil
  24. 2 1/2 cups water of
  25. 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  26. 2 - 3 strands mace of
  27. 1 cardamoms black
  28. 3 cardamoms green
  29. 2 cinnamon sticks
  30. 4 - 5 cloves
  31. 1 - 2 bay leaves
  32. 1 teaspoon oil
  33. 1 1/2 cups basmati rice
  34. 1 1/2 teaspoons Masala Biryani Powder (for 3 layers)
  35. 1 onion large fried
  36. 1/2 a cup coriander leaves chopped
  37. 1 cup mint leaves chopped
  38. 3 - 5 strands saffron milk soaked in 5 teaspoons hot


60 mins
  1. Add Photo

    In a pan dry roast all spices listed in 1. Step (not powders) on a very low flame for about 5 minutes, continuously stir. Make sure spices do not get burned.

  2. Add Photo

    Add dry powders and fry for another 2 minutes. Turn off heat and set aside.

  3. Add Photo

    After about 30 minutes crush spices in mortar/ or blender. Store Biryani Masala Powder in an airtight glass jar. This serves up to 3 Biryanis (approx. 1 teaspoon per cup of rice).

  4. Add Photo

    Cut chicken breasts in small square pieces. Add all ingredients for chicken marination in a bowl as given in 2. Step and set aside for at least 2- 4 hours (best overnight).

  5. Add Photo

    Rinse rice till water runs clear and then soak for 30 minutes. In a pot heat 3 cups of water. When water starts to boil add oil, dry spices as given in 3. Step as well as salt and cook for about 4-5 minutes until aroma is released. Now add soaked rice and cook for max. 5 minutes(rice should be 3/4 cooked). Drain water and keep aside.

  6. Add Photo

    Take a heavy casserole and transfer marinated chicken. Add oil. Now add all spices listed in 4. Step 1/3 of fried onions, 1/3 portion of coriander- and mint leaves, 1/2 teaspoon Biryani Masala. Level the surface.

  7. Add Photo

    Layer 1/2 the portion of cooked rice evenly. Then add all spices listed in 4. Step 1/3 of fried onions, 1/3 portion of coriander- and mint leaves, 1/2 teaspoon Biryani Masala. Level the surface.

  8. Add Photo

    Layer rest of cooked rice evenly. Then add rest of the spices listed in 4. Step 1/3 of fried onions, 1/3 portion of coriander- and mint leaves,1/2 teaspoon Biryani Masala. Pour the saffron milk over the top.

  9. Add Photo

    Take a fresh kitchen towel and soak in water, squeeze tight so that it is moist and not dripping in water. Fold towel to a double layer and spread over the the rim of the casserole. Now cover the lid on casserole. Set to cook on medium flame for exactly 20 minutes. You will see the vapor rising.

  10. Add Photo

    Now reduce the flame to minimum and let cook for another 15-20 minutes exactly. Switch off flame and keep aside about 15-20 minutes.

  11. Add Photo

    Take off the lid and mix well. Garnish with coriander leaves/ mint leaves and serve with Cucumber-mint raita and cut onions.

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