Hyderabadi Veg Biriyani
A popular spice and vegetables mixed favoured rice dish which is typically prepared by layering the biryani gravy and basmati rice in flat bottom vessel. traditionally the dum is a combination of flavored vegetables and rice cooked together with aromatic spices, saffron, and nuts. You only need raita | Yogurt dip for the side.
2 Cups Basmati Rice
TO GRIND: -
- 1 inch ginger
- 5 cloves garlic
- 4 green chilies
- 1/2 cup cilantro/coriander leaves
- 1/4 cup mint leaves
WHOLE SPICES & FLavors: (Divide into two equal sets)(Use one set for vegetables and another for rice)
- 2 Bay leaves
- 6 cardamom pods
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 2 teaspoons shah jeera / fine cumin
- 6 cloves
- 2 star anise
- salt to taste
- 2 tablespoons lime juice divided
- 3 tablespoon oil
- 2 tablespoons ghee
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon red chilly powder/paprika
1 teaspoon garam masala / Shaan biryani masala
- 2 medium tomatoes chopped (1 cup)
- 3 cups assorted vegetables cut into medium pieces
- I used cauliflower, carrots, peas, potatoes & paneer
- 1 cup thick yogurt
GARNISH: -2 cups medium size onions finely sliced (about 2 medium onions)
- 1/3 cup cashews
- 1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro
- 1/4 cup finely chopped mint leaves
- 2 tablespoons ghee/clarified butter
- 1/4 cup warm milk + pinch of saffron
- 1/2 cup reserved rice water
- 2-3 drops of Food color orange (Optional)
Soak rice in water for 30 minutes to an hour. Gather the ingredients into groups.Heat oil + ghee in a deep pan (Pan in which you will be making biryani) on medium heat. Add cashews and once it golden brown drain and keep aside. In the same oil fry onions till its golden brown. Drain and keep Asid
Now add the whole spices (Set1). Cook for a minute on medium heat till it's fragrant and then add tomatoes. Sauté and cover the pot to let the tomatoes soften.
Once you see oil separating, mash the tomatoes with the spoon and add spices (turmeric powder + red chilly powder + garam masala). Saute for a minute and then add veggies. Roast on medium high flame. Add salt to taste followed with lime juice and ground green paste. Once the veggies are almost cooked, add yogurt. Let this simmer for a minute. Add half of the fried onions and mix (When the vegetables are cooking, keep rice.)
TO COOK RICE:
Keep 6 cups of water to boil. Add salt and another set of whole spices followed by drained rice.
Taste the water. Salt should be slightly more than what you ideally use. It is the same way you salt while making pasta.
Stir the rice in between and let it cook till 75% done. (When you take a grain and bite, it should be slightly underdone.). Strain the rice and reserve 1/2 cup of water.
Add the rice on top of the vegetable and gently press with a ladle. Drizzle a tablespoon of ghee followed by reserved rice water and saffron milk. Now add a layer of cilantro, mint, remaining fried onions and cashews. (If you are adding food color add 2-3 drops of food color randomly.)
Cover the pot with aluminum foil and cover it with a lid. (You can place the girdle/tawa on heat and place the biryani pot on top of it. Also, nonstick pots makes the process easier.)
Turn the heat to low and let it cook covered
for 20-30 minutes.
To check for doneness, scoop out a portion of rice and veggies from the side of the pot. Vegetables should be cooked and no liquid should remain.
For Layering: you can add 1/2 of the rice and garnish, then add another layer of rice and garnish on top. This method generally is best when you are making more quantity.
For authentic vegetable dum biryani: Once the final assembly is done the lid is sealed with dough so that the remaining cooking process takes place with the trapped steam. (I use dough when I have it handy).