Thursday, January 2, 2014

Mutton Biriyani - Coconut Based

Coconutty Biriyani - For a Typical Kerala effect 

Recipe belongs to Shanhai - our malayali friend here in salt Lake. 

Though there are lot of Biriyani recipes we can try , this one is very special and very much worth trying. 
Its the tastiest Biriyani we have ever had...
The only one recipe I tried with Coconut oil and Ghee , a different recipe,very appealing for the Malayali's in special as its all coconut in it. Though  I tried adding a few ingredients to make it extra tasty (I thought i would) 
 I liked  the way it tastes when he makes it..

Since  "The best things in life are meant to be shared " 

Here goes the recipe for Shanhai's Special Biriyani -  


For Rice 

Basmathi Rice - 2 cups
Ghee - 3 table spoon 
Saffron -  few 
Bay leaves – 2 no’s dry
Cinnamon and cloves – 2 to 3 (small pieces)
Cardamom – 3 to 4 no’s
Salt to taste and juice of half lime. 

Meat Masala Powder 

(Dry roast all ingredients together and grind it to store these in airtight container, I make these in more quantity)

Cinnamon ( 1 medium size stick ) , cloves (3 no’s) ,cardamom – 4 to 5 no’s , Fennel seeds – 1 table spoon , Dry whole pepper – 2 tsp.

For Gravy

Goat Meat/Mutton - 1/2 kg 
Coconut oil - 3 to 4 table spoon (or little more ) 
Whole spices - cinnamon , cloves, cardamom crushed) 
Onion – 1 medium sliced
Shallots / small onion – 1 cup
Ginger – 1 big piece
Garlic – ¾ cup (Garlic is more than ginger in this recipe)
Green chili’s – 12 to 15 no’s
Cilantro/Coriander leaves and Mint leaves – ½ cup each
Curd – 1 cup
Thick Coconut milk – Little more than 1 cup
Turmeric Powder – 1 tsp
Coriander powder – 2 table spoon
Fennel seed powder – 2 tsp
Fenugreek Powder – 2 tsp
Ground Masala – 1 tsp (ingredients on top or use Biriyani masala )
Cashew nuts – ¼ cup (powdered)
Salt for taste.

For Garnishing

Ghee – 2 table spoon
Onion – 1 or more sliced

Cashewnuts – ¼ cup 

Fry the onion in ghee till brown.

I was a bit impatient to wait till it becomes brown :( 


For Making rice 

* Wash and soak rice in water for 20 minutes , drain and keep aside. 

*  Heat the vessel to cook the rice , add ghee , add in the whole masala's given under rice (cinnamon , cloves , cardamon and bay leaves ) saute for a few seconds and then add the drained rice , fry rice for 5 minutes in medium heat , keep on stirring and add water - little less than double  amount of rice (I took a little less than 4 cups water as I took 2 cups rice) 

* Add salt and saffron when water starts to boil and and wait for the rice to get cooked , stir occasionally. Make sure you stir in between or else the rice may stick to the bottom.I had kept the lid closed.

*Remove from heat when the water totally dries off.Keep aside , keep the rice open , if possible spread the rice to a flat surfaced plate.

I usually does other way , first boil water (any amount ) when it starts to boil , add all the whole spices and salt and then add the drained rice , wait for the rice to get 3/4rth cooked , add lime juice and drain the rice.

For the Gravy 

* Wash and clean the mutton pieces , keep aside. 

* Slightly grind (or use a chopper) small onion , ginger , garlic and green chili's and keep aside.

*Heat Oil in a pressure cooker (I used a normal pan , can save time if its a pressure cooker) , add the crushed spices (whole cinamon, cloves and cardamon  (2 each ) to it, saute for a few seconds.

* Add in the ground/chopped  ginger/garlic/small onion and green chili , saute these for a few minutes (5 to 7 minutes ) , add in the sliced onion and keep on stirring , these may stick to the bottom , will need to add oil or water in between. stir till the onion turns golden brown.

* Add in the spice powder (coriander powder,fennel seed powder, turmeric, fenugreek powder and a 1 tsp meat masala powder given above) you may use any packed Biriyani masala powder too but do not add more that's the trick :) just 1 tsp is enough in this Biriyani.

* Add in the marinated Goat meat , stir till all are combined and the meat is coated with the masala mixture , cook the meat keeping the lid open for 5 to 7 minutes stirring continiously.

* Add the very finely chopped cilantro/coriander leaves and mint leaves and also 1 cup curd , stir and close the lid ( 2 to 3 whistles in medium heat should do) 

check if the meat is cooked well , keep the lid open and  continue cooking in medium heat for another 10 to 15  minutes  , do stir continuously  , till the water/stock from the meat almost dries.

* Add in the coconut milk and  the powdered cashew nuts continue cooking for another 10 to 15 minutes , stirring constantly. Switch off the heat when you see nice and thick gravy and the meat is cooked nicely. 


  • Layer first the meat pieces and a little of  gravy , top with the cooked rice , sprinkle cilantro/coriander leaves and masala power (optional) , repeat the layering till the rice is all layered. Do not pour more gravy for layering the top , then we may miss the plain white rice in the Biriyani as it may all get soaked up. That's the lesson I learned this time :) 

  • layering usually starts with gravy first and ends up with rice on top , may sprinkle few of the left over gravy on top. 

  • Top with Fried onion and cashew nuts and a little of chopped cilantro/coriander leave. Cover this dish with a foil and bake in 375 degree F for at least 1 hour. ( 2 hours would be better ) 


:  Marinating : I haven't seen our friend marinating the meat pieces  , though I marinate it usually , with salt, turmeric , pepper powder , masala powder (given above) and also a table spoon of lime juice and vinegar (optional).The whole step is optional.

: If you think , the gravy is more and the rice looks soggy , bake it uncovered in 300 degree F for half an hour in the middle rack.

:If you are making white rice for the first time , its better to make rice as I do (have given on top under method for cooking rice ) , as I have experienced stickiness when rice not drained, this time it was fine , but the traditional way is how our friend does I guess. 

: Since the onion used for garnishing is fried in ghee , its enough to flavor the whole biriyani , if using regular oil for frying the onion , do drizzle a little of ghee on top of the layered rice before baking.

:If you don't have a Bake oven , cover the layered pan tight , and place it over a iron skillet( can use a chapathi - tava) , heat this tava in low heat for 1 hour ,its almost a bake may also place heated coal on top of the lid , make sure the lid is heat proof.

Happy New year to all my friends !!!


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