My husband's mother taught me this recipe, an authentic Hyderabadi-style biryani that is a trademark of home-cooking in south India. For a more traditional version, substitute curd (homemade south Indian yogurt) for yogurt. If you cannot find ginger garlic paste, crush together ginger and garlic in equal portions.

RK
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Ingredients

8
Original recipe yields 8 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified

Directions

  • Soak rice for 30 minutes in enough water to cover; then drain.

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  • Meanwhile, heat ghee in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in cloves, cardamom, and bay leaves. Then stir in onion, and cook until soft, 6 to 7 minutes. Stir in chile peppers and ginger paste. Stir in yogurt, salt, and curry, and then place chicken in pan. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally and turning the chicken pieces, until only about 1 cup of liquid remains.

  • Mix in rice, water, and cilantro. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook for 20 minutes. Check rice after about 12 minutes; if it is dry, add 1/2 cup water, and continue cooking.

Nutrition Facts

570 calories; 19 g total fat; 65 mg cholesterol; 509 mg sodium. 70.5 g carbohydrates; 25 g protein; Full Nutrition

Reviews (38)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
09/05/2005
This recipe was excellent! Very different from the mughalai version of biryani. I made a few modifications though because I did not have all the ingredients. I used biryani masala (available at all indian grocery stores) instead of cloves. I also doubled the quantity of chili peppers bcoz I used the tiny red Thai chilis and we like it hot in our house:) I used boneless skinless chicken breasts and added 2 potatoes too (I love potatoes in biryani). The recipe is definitely a keeper.Thank you for submitting it. Read More
(67)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 2 stars
08/03/2009
Actually this recipe is incomplete. I hail from Hyderabad. I don't see any instruction to layer the meat and the rice. Although we suggest 1:3 water for rice this is not standard. You must vary the water according to your rice. And yes please use a good basmati rice for best results. Using about 2/3rd of the water required to make the rice cook rice separately till half cooked. Now place a layer of chicken 'curry' then a layer of rice then chicken again and top off with rice. Each layer of rice should be sprinkled with a saffron solution: soak about a teaspoonful of saffron in a cup of milk before you start cooking the chicken. This will be well soaked by now. Sprinkle half of it over each layer of rice. Cover pot tightly. If you do not have a tight fitting lid make a stiff dough with wheat or all purpose flour and seal the pot. Now place it on a low-medium flame and finish the cooking: about 15 minutes. Try this. A lot of trouble but worth the effort. Hopefully I justified my two star rating. Read More
(138)
47 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 22
  • 4 star values: 10
  • 3 star values: 7
  • 2 star values: 4
  • 1 star values: 4
Rating: 5 stars
09/05/2005
This recipe was excellent! Very different from the mughalai version of biryani. I made a few modifications though because I did not have all the ingredients. I used biryani masala (available at all indian grocery stores) instead of cloves. I also doubled the quantity of chili peppers bcoz I used the tiny red Thai chilis and we like it hot in our house:) I used boneless skinless chicken breasts and added 2 potatoes too (I love potatoes in biryani). The recipe is definitely a keeper.Thank you for submitting it. Read More
(67)
Rating: 2 stars
08/03/2009
Actually this recipe is incomplete. I hail from Hyderabad. I don't see any instruction to layer the meat and the rice. Although we suggest 1:3 water for rice this is not standard. You must vary the water according to your rice. And yes please use a good basmati rice for best results. Using about 2/3rd of the water required to make the rice cook rice separately till half cooked. Now place a layer of chicken 'curry' then a layer of rice then chicken again and top off with rice. Each layer of rice should be sprinkled with a saffron solution: soak about a teaspoonful of saffron in a cup of milk before you start cooking the chicken. This will be well soaked by now. Sprinkle half of it over each layer of rice. Cover pot tightly. If you do not have a tight fitting lid make a stiff dough with wheat or all purpose flour and seal the pot. Now place it on a low-medium flame and finish the cooking: about 15 minutes. Try this. A lot of trouble but worth the effort. Hopefully I justified my two star rating. Read More
(138)
Rating: 5 stars
09/05/2005
This recipe was excellent! Very different from the mughalai version of biryani. I made a few modifications though because I did not have all the ingredients. I used biryani masala (available at all indian grocery stores) instead of cloves. I also doubled the quantity of chili peppers bcoz I used the tiny red Thai chilis and we like it hot in our house:) I used boneless skinless chicken breasts and added 2 potatoes too (I love potatoes in biryani). The recipe is definitely a keeper.Thank you for submitting it. Read More
(67)
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Rating: 5 stars
02/05/2007
I wanted to tell everyone that there is no need to temper the yogurt. It will not ruin the dish if you add it all at once. It may look curdled but it is fine. Lipstickfetish you didnt need to throw away the dish! Sorry! Read More
(50)
Rating: 4 stars
01/25/2007
If you have never cooked with yogurt you should know about 'tempering' before you make this dish. Sorry to say that I found out the hard way and after 30 minutes of cooking ruined the entire dinner when the addition of yogurt caused the sauce to curdle! Determined to get dinner on the table I did remake the entire recipe- this time using great care to add the liquid slowly to the yogurt. The end result was good and I will make it again. Read More
(33)
Rating: 5 stars
07/05/2005
Excellent combination of flavours. Instead of water use chicken stock by dissolving a stock cube in boiling water. Will go soggy if too much liquid is added. Read More
(28)
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Rating: 4 stars
09/22/2007
Giving it rating so I can add a comment. With yogurt if you use full fat yogurt it usually wont look curdled or chunky. The low fat or fat free ones will. It doesn't change the flavor though. Read More
(17)
Rating: 5 stars
04/13/2008
This recipe is virtually indestructible. I made A LOT of substitutions and still the flavor came out rich the texture was great and the presentation beautiful. I didn't have cloves so I substituted cinnamon. I didn't have whole chicken so I used chicken breast and to compensate for flavor used a bullion cube when adding water. I didn't have curry leaves so I used dried curry and I didn't have green peppers so I used one red pepper and cayenne powder. I didn't have any problem with curdling -- used a thick Dutch yogurt. I didn't have jasmine rice so I had to use risotto. I can see that the jasmine would have been better (lighter and fluffier) and that cloves would have been better than cinnamon. But all in all it still tasted great! Read More
(17)
Rating: 5 stars
01/11/2007
This was wonderful but I need to suggest one major change to the recipe -- use basmati rice not jasmine/regular white rice. This biryani is very delicately spiced as it should be and the yoghurt adds a nice touch. My local market was out of curry leaves at my last trip so I used just a bit of mild curry powder to add extra flavor. Also make sure to invest in ghee for this recipe. I would actually give the recipe just under 5 stars due to the kind of rice suggested but it was altogether a great biryani. Read More
(15)
Rating: 1 stars
03/31/2009
Nothing like any authentic biryani I have tasted and most of my friends are Indian/Pakistani. Know that if you make this dish it is a very watered down version of biryani to the point of not being biryani. It's almost plain rice with chicken. Read More
(12)