Chicken Dum Biryani
Ingredient For Chicken Dum Biryani
2 medium sized onions, chopped/sliced, 1/2 cup of oil to fry the onions (sunflower oil, canola oil, or vegetable oil), 2 lbs of Chicken on the bone cut into large parts (8-10 pieces), 2 tbsp ginger garlic paste, 1 tbsp red chili powder, Salt - to taste (approximately 1 tsp), 1 cup yogurt, 1 tsp Garam Masala powder, 2 medium sized onions, chopped/sliced, 1/2 cup of oil to fry the onions (sunflower oil, canola oil, or vegetable oil), 2 lbs of Chicken on the bone cut into large parts (8-10 pieces), 2 tbsp ginger garlic paste, 1 tbsp red chili powder, Salt - to taste (approximately 1 tsp), 1 cup yogurt, 1 tsp Garam Masala powder, 1 tsp green cardamom powder, 1 tsp cumin powder, 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, 1 cup of fried brown onions, 4 tbsp melted ghee (clarified butter), 1/4 cup of freshly chopped coriander leaves (cilantro), 10-15 mint leaves (no stalk), 2-4 green chilies (broken or cut), 1 tbsp lemon juice, 2 cups of basmati rice, 8 cups of water, 2 one inch pieces of cinnamon, 5-6 whole peppercorns (to taste), 5 green cardamoms, 2 black cardamoms, 3 cloves, 2 pieces of cinnamon,1 bay leaf,1 piece of mace, 1 tsp of ghee, 1/2 tsp of salt, 1/4 tsp saffron, 2 tbsp milk, 5-7 tbsp of ghee clarified butter (to drizzle atop the biryani before pressure cooking), Handful of cashews (optional),Handful of golden raisins (optional),Rose water (optional)
Heat the oil in the pan. Start with the stove heat on high to get the oil nice and hot, quickly. The onions should sizzle when you put them in the pan with the oil.
Once you see oil evaporating a little bit, the oil is ready for the onions.
Add your onions to the oil. It's easier to fry onions in smaller portions, so for 2 sliced onions, you can try frying 3 batches or so.
Reduce the flame to medium. Deep fry the onions on medium heat until they turn a golden brown. This should take about 10-20 minutes
While they are sizzling in the oil, gently mix the onions around to keep all of them coated, and to disperse the heat and oil evenly.
If the flame is very high the onions will burn on the outside and remain watery on the inside.
Take out the onions from the pan. Use a big, perforated spoon (a spoon with holes in it for drainage) to removes the onions from the pan once they are golden brown. You want a perforated spoon to drain out excess oil.
Place the onions on a plate with a paper towel on it, to absorb the rest of the excess oil. Put the onions aside for later.
Marinating The Chicken
Put the chicken in a bowl or pan. The bowl or pan needs to be big enough so there is enough room to mix the chicken in with the marinade, and have the marinade coat the chicken completely.
Keep the chicken in big pieces, and on the bone. Keeping the chicken on the bone will create a stock once the chicken is being cooked, adding a nice, full flavor to the biryani.
Add the spices and powders to the chicken. One by one add the marinade ingredients to the chicken:, Ginger garlic paste - 2 tbsp, Red chili powder - 1 tbsp, Salt - to taste (approximately 1 tsp), Yogurt - 1 cup, Garam Masala Powder - 1 tsp, Green cardamom powder - 1 tsp, Cumin powder - 1 tsp, Turmeric - 1/2 tsp, Fried brown onions - 1 cup, Ghee (clarified butter) - 4 tbsp, Freshly chopped coriander leaves (cilantro) - 1/4 cup, Mint leaves (no stalk) 10-15, 2-4 green chilies (broken or cut), Lemon juice - 1 tbsp
Mix your ingredients. Mix all the ingredients until they are dispersed throughly, and the chicken pieces are completely covered with the marinade mixture. Once the chicken is coated with all the spices and flavorings, let it marinade.There is a wide range of how long you can let the chicken marinade. You can marinade the chicken overnight to ensure the chicken absorbs all the flavors, or you can marinade it for less time. However, give the chicken a minimum of 4 hours to marinade to set in.
Refrigerate the chicken. Once you are finished with the marinading the chicken, cover and place the chicken in the refrigerator, and work on the other parts of the biryani.
Soak the rice. Rinse the rice with cool water to remove some of the outermost starch, and then allow it to continue soaking in the water. Let the rice soak between 30 minutes to 1 hour.
For biryani, you want to use basmati rice to give the fullest flavor to the dish.
Bring 8 cups of water to a boil. This is the water you are going to cook the rice in. The water must be boiling before you add the rice.
Add the rice. Along with the rice, add some other ingredients to give the rice a full flavor, and prevent the rice from sticking: 5 green cardamoms,2 black cardamoms, 3 cloves, 2 pieces of cinnamon, 1 bay leaf, 1 piece of mace, 1 tsp of ghee, 1/2 tsp of salt.
Stir the added ingredients. Stir the ingredients to make sure they are all mixed in, and then cover the rice boil it for 8-10 minutes or until the rice is cooked half to three quarters of the way. Once the rice is cooked half to three quarters, you can take out the whole ingredients you added earlier (cloves, cardamoms, etc.)
Check the consistency of the rice. Since the rice should only be cooked half to a quarter of the way when you take it off the stove, the grains should be soft on the outside but still hard in the middle.
This is because the rest of the rice gets cooked on dum (when you layer the chicken and rice, seal it with dough around the edges to lock in the steam, and put it on a very low flame).
You can tell how cooked the rice is by taking a grain and pressing it with your fingers. The rice should break apart into pieces, but still have a hard texture to it. If it is soft and mushes in your fingers, you have cooked it too much.
Turn off the heat. Turn off the heat once you rice is cooked half to three quarters of the way, and let it sit. The hot water will cook the rice a little bit more, without cooking it too much.
Prepare the saffron milk. Add 1/4 tsp saffron to 2 tbsp of warm milk and let it soak for approximately 15 minutes. This saffron mixture will go on top of the rice when you are preparing to cook the final part of the biryani and it will give a nice flavoring.
Prepare the sealing dough. Place 2 cups of chapati flour in a bowl and add approximately 3/4 cup of lukewarm water. Stir until the mixture forms a soft dough.
If the dough is dry and isn't really mixing well, you can add 1-2 tablespoons of water.
Knead the dough by pushing on it with your knuckles and heels of your hands. Make sure your hands are damp with water while doing this so the dough doesn't stick to your skin. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes to ensure it is fully mixed together.
Preparing The Biryani
Place chicken into a thick bottom pot. Traditionally, biryani is cooked in an Indian cooking pot called a biryani handi, but any thick bottom pot will work just fine. A non-stick pot/handi works best.
Spread the chicken so each piece of chicken is touching the bottom and/or sides of the pot. This will help ensure that each piece of chicken gets cooked throughly.
Spread the rice. The rice that you cooked earlier is now ready to be added to the chicken. Create a layer of rice, adding about half of the rice on top of the chicken.
With your perforated spoon, pack the rice firmly into the pot. It is okay if some water comes along with the rice, it will help things cook with the steam.
On top of the rice, sprinkle on fried onions(approximately 2 tbsp), chopped coriander leaves(approximately 1tbsp), and mint leaves (approximately 8-10).You can also sprinkle on cashew or golden raisins, but these are optional.
Add the next layer of rice. This is the second, and final layer of rice you will be adding to the biryani. Once the rest of the rest is spread evenly, add on the rest of the brown onions (approximately 1 tbsp), a little bit more coriander leaves (approximately 1/2 tbsp), mint leaves (3-5), the saffron milk mixture, and approximately 6 tbsp of ghee.An alternative and optional topping is adding some rose water. Just add about 1/2 a capful, and sprinkle it over the top of the biryani.
Put the lid on the pot upside down. Roll the chapati dough into long pieces and put the dough on the edges of the pot's upside down lid. You add the chapati dough to the edges of the lid, so when you turn the lid right side up, the dough seals the pot so the chicken and rice can steam cook together.
Press lightly but firmly to make sure the lid is secure and tight.
You can add a weight to the lid to ensure that it stays sealed, but usually if you use the dough, it is sealed good enough.
Cook the biryani. Keep the biryani cooking for about 5-10 on high flame. Then, take the pot off the flame, put a cooking plate on the flame, and place the pot back on the flame with the cooking plate.
This is the safest method to cook the biryani and make sure the biryani doesn't burn because of the direct contact with the heat.
After about 35 switch off the flame, but don't open the biryani yet. Let the biryani sit for another 10 minutes.
Carefully remove the pot's top. The dough will be a little cooked and hardened, but crack through it, and take of the top to check the biryani.
A lot of steam will come out so be careful not to burn yourself.
Slowly stick a large spoon on the inside side of the hand and lift to get the bottom layers of the rice out. Then, as you work your way down, bring up a piece of chicken. The pieces of chicken should have a brown coloring.
Enjoy! Usually, biryani is eaten with your hands, and is served with raita, a cold, refreshing, yogurt condiment.