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Thursday, 24 January 2013

Kannur Chicken Biriyani

Though I’m supposed to post Kozhikodan Biriyani recipe for Aakrantham fans, I’m not yet ready with fine photos for it. So thought of posting a Kannur Biriyani’s recipe, for which some snaps were clicked few days back by my hubby, when we made it at home.
This recipe is a dedication to my friend Ammu and there’s an interesting story behind this dedication. We used to have a year-end gift exchanging, amongst a group of my Cognizant friends called ‘Roofians’, similar to the Christmas friend activity done in school days.  As we are spread across different locations, the friend selection is done by an online tool developed by few of us and the gifts are ordered online. Moreover, from a common mailbox we use to assign different funny tasks to our friend anonymously. And this year, Ammu got a task to prepare Hyderabadi Biriyani and post the recipe as well as the photos. Poor girl! How can she do this if she doesn’t even know how to make an ordinary Biriyani? But she was clever enough to post the pictures in the Face book group along with the recipe copied and customized from a blog. But the cleverer group members made it out from her attire, hairstyle, serving dishes and the suspicious ‘scissors’ found in the photo, that the Biriyani was bought from some hotels on her way back from office and she mixed it in a steel vessel to serve. Also the scissors were used to cut the pickle’s and raitha’s packet. And what more?! In the photo, she eats the self made Biriyani at her dining table, with the neatly tied hairstyle and beautifully pinned salwar kameez and shawl!! Finally since the truth shined through the lie, she had to admit the fraud.

So for her, I’m posting a Biriyani recipe here…

For frying Chicken
Chicken – 1 kg
Chilli powder – 1 Tb spoon
Kashmiri chilli powder – 1 Tb spoon
Lemon juice – 1 Tbspoon
Turmeric powder – ¼ teaspoon
Ginger-garlic paste – 1 teaspoon
Salt – as needed
Ghee – 2 Tb spoon
Oil – 1 Tb spoon

For Masala:
Onion – chopped - 8 medium sized
Tomato – cut into small pieces - 2 big sized
Green chilli – 7 no.s
Ginger – 2 thumb sized pieces
Garlic – 15 big cloves
Corriander, Pudina and curry leaves – chopped – a handful
Garam masala – 1 ½ teaspoon
Curd – 3 Tb spoon
Pepper powder – as needed
Salt – as needed
Turmeric powder – ½ teaspoon
Ghee – 2 Tbspoon

For Rice:
Kayama rice – 4 cups
Ghee – 3 Tb spoon
Oil – 1 Tb spoon
Cinnamon – 3 small pieces
Cloves – 3 no.s
Bay leaves – 2 no.s -  cut into pieces
Water – 5 ½ cups
Salt – as needed

For layering:
Onion – ½ chopped
Cashew nuts – 10 no.s
Raisins – 15 no.s
Garam masala – 1 teaspoon
Lemon juice – 1 Tbspoon
Corriander leaves chopped – 3 stems
Ghee – 1 Tbspoon

How to:

1. Drain water from washed and cut chicken pieces. Marinate chicken using chilli powder, kashmiri chilli powder, lemon juice, turmeric powder, ginger-garlic paste, salt and keep for 30 minutes. Heat ghee and oil in a fry pan. Shallow fry the chicken.
2. Heat ghee in a non-stick vessel. Add chopped onions and sauté well till the onions turn translucent.  Crush ginger, garlic and green chillies in a grinder and add this to the onion. Sauté for a minute. Add coriander, curry and pudina leaves to this and fry well.  Once the raw smell of this mixture is changed, add tomato and mix well. Sauté all these together for two more minutes. Add gharam masala, salt and turmeric powder, sauté and add curd to it. If needed, add pepper powder also.
3. Adding the remaining ghee from the chicken fry to the masala and sauté well. To this, add the fried chicken. Mix the masala and chicken well and cover the dish. Keep the flame to low and leave it to cook for 10- 15 minutes.
4. Drain water from the washed Kayama rice. (do not soak the rice). Add ghee and oil to a pressure cooker and on heating, add cinnamon, cloves and bay leaves. Sauté well. Add the drained rice and fry in low flames for about 5-8 minutes. Make sure that the rice grains are not sticking to the bottom. Now pour water to the fried rice and add needed salt. Close the pressure cooker and wait for one whistle. Switch off the flame and pull the vent weight (pressure regulator) upwards to blow off the steam (or place under flowing water). Now open the Pressure cooker and sauté the rice with a flat spoon making sure that the rice grains are not broken.

Note: I’m using Kayama rice here which actually needs 6 cups of water for 4 cups of rice for proper cooking. But since the rice will again be cooked during layering, I’ve poured only 5 ½ cups. Similarly you can use water depending on the type of rice (Basmati/Kayama/Jeerakasala) you are using.

5. In a small frying pan, add some ghee. Fry the chopped onion till golden brown. Fry the nuts and raisins as well. Take off from the pan and keep this aside.
6. In a big vessel, put an even layer of the cooked rice. On top of it spread a pinch of gharam masala, pudina leaves and sprinkle a little of  ghee and lemon juice. Above this put a layer of masala along with chicken pieces. Again a layer of rice and masala similarly and on top of it, rice layer. (depending on the vessel’s size, decide the layer count. Anyhow bottom and top layer should be rice). On top of this rice spread pudina, fried onions, nuts and raisins. Close the vessel tightly with a lid. On top of the lid, place a vessel with  hot water in it. Switch on the stove and keep in the lowest possible flame, for 30 minutes. Switch off and don’t open the vessel for 20 minutes.
7. Serve hot, with raitha, pickle and pappadam.


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