Sunday, March 14, 2010

Rice layered with chicken and potatoes & Giveaway still on

Giveaway is still on and goes on till March 19, 2010. Details on the right sidebar. Non-bloggers are welcome too, leave your contact details-email address on the comment.

Genetically Modified Foods was the topic of conversation on Science Friday on NPR. There were discussing about how GM crops in US, India and other developing countries. There was a Monsonto technologist, an Anthropologist, a scientist and a director from a bio-fuel group. It gave me a bit more understanding of the GM crop usage in India primarily cotton.

marinating chicken and roasted potatoes

Addition of dried fruits and nuts to any dish elevates it to the next level. A humble lemon rice morphs from boring to interesting with the addition of roasted cashews or peanuts. The same goes for any quick flavored rice preparation.

The effect only gets magnified when nuts and raisins are added to chicken biryani. There is not much that can go wrong with chicken biryani but this addition elevates it to different level altogether and gives the impression that quite a bit of time has been spent slogging in the kitchen. It works at my house every time.

onions and spices being cooked

DD2 loves looking at cook books with colorful pictures. She was intently going over the pages of Taste of the East written by Deh Ta Hsiung, Rafi Fernandez and Steven Wheeler which has a section on Taste of India and chanced upon the above mentioned recipe and has been asking it be cooked with the emphasis on the nuts and raisins.

If you cook biryani the dum way, this is probably very familiar to you. The addition of potatoes and peas being the only difference.

Cooking in the oven works better than using the stove top which has always ended in burn rice at the bottom.

Rice layered with chicken and potatoes
1. 2 lbs chicken cut into desired pieces
2. 2 potatoes, scrubbed and cut into cubes
3. 1 cup of green peas (frozen or fresh)
4. 6-8 green chilies slit + 1 tbsp chili powder + 2 tsp turmeric powder
5. 2 cups sliced red onions
6. 2 tbsp grated ginger
7. 6 garlic cloves chopped fine
8. 1 cup cilantro leaves
9. 1/2 cup mint leaves
10. 1 cup beaten yogurt
11. 1 cup chopped tomatoes or 2 tbsp tomato paste
12. 1 cup milk + 1/2 cup of water
13. 1 tbsp milk + few pinches of saffron powder
14. 1 tbsp ghee
15. 2 tbsp cashews + 2 tbsp raisins
16. 1 tbsp oil
17. Whole spices - cumin seeds, cloves, bay leaves, cinnamon sticks, star anise
18. 2 Cups of basmati rice washed and soaked in water for 1/2 hour
19. salt to taste

1. Marinate the chicken pieces with yogurt, chili powder, turmeric powder, salt, 1 tsp each of ginger and garlic and set aside for 1 hour.
2. Bring water to boil and soak the rice in it for 5-10 minutes, drain and set aside.
2a. Soak the saffron in warm milk and set aside.

Preheat oven to 375F if finishing in the oven.

3. Heat oil in a pan and fry the potatoes till golden and set aside to drain
4. In a pot(that can be put in the oven at 375F) you will be finishing the cooking heat the 1/4 of the ghee and the rest of the oil. Add the whole spices and when they turn brown.
5. Add the onions and saute till they turn translucent, add the chilies, ginger and garlic and cook for a few more minutes.
6. Add the coriander and mint leaves and saute till they are wilted.
7. Add the chili powder and salt. Now add the tomatoes and saute till they are soft, if using tomato paste mix it in.
8. Add the chicken and let it cook gently for 8-10 minutes. Add the peas if doing so.
9. Now layer half of the rice on top of the chicken.
10. Then make a layer of the potatoes and layer the rest of the rice on top.
11. Sprinkle the water all over the rice. Make holes in the rice and pour the saffron flavored milk into the holes. Place the rest of the ghee on top.
12. If using the oven, cover the pan with aluminum foil. Else close the pan with the lid.
13. Cook on medium heat for 20 minutes. Or in the oven for 15 minutes.
14. Heat a tsp of ghee in a pan and roast the cashews and raisins.
15. When the biryani is cooked toss the rice gently and garnish with the nuts.

The preparation more or less similar to the regular pressure cooker biryani and if you want to use the pressure cooker that should work too.


  1. I am a big fan of Biriyani, any type of Biriyani but I do not have a liking for the nuts in them. I have heard it tastes great, will have to give it a try.

  2. Will try this with veggies.

  3. Biryani...Yum! Add aloo and it only gets better and better..

  4. Ahaaa! Another foodie in the make. :) so sweet!

    I will try the biryani sometime soon. yes, I agree - the cashews and raisins elevate the regular biryani to next level.

    I just made idli podi using your mil's recipe. stuck to the original recipe. It turned out real good. Thanks!

  5. thanks for the link of the science friday, sounds interesting, particularly the guest list is very intriguing. Your daughter is already showing signs of becoming a great foodie like you! her pick of rice with chicken looks delicious.

  6. thats the benagli version of Biriyani. in every shop in kolkata biriyani comes with potatoes and boiled egs. looks perfect Indo. I used to get burned rice at the bottom while cookig on dum on stove top. then I started layering chicken with gravy at the bottom first layer. i always put the handi on a tawa that way it never got burn.

  7. Love the addition of nuts in biriyani. Infact my gandma will never make a mutton chukka with atleast 2:1 ation of mutton pieces with cashew nuts. Those were days when they store cashews in big tins in the store room and ill throw a handul in whatever they felt like. This biriyani looks very flavorful Indo!

  8. Oh and how can I leave without mentioning about DD2 ? She has great tastes :) Vilayum payir mulayile :)

  9. Fantastic biriyani Sure to try this with veggies

  10. Who doesn't love biryani ... and a Bengali loves it more when there are potatoes in it. My tummy just growled Indo! :-)
    Thanks for the lemon rice link too ... have some left over rice ... now I know what am having for lunch. :-)

  11. It looks nice. I slaved over a pressure cooker veg pulav for 90 mins yesterday!

  12. I can eat this rice dish for breakfast, lunch, dinner and when ever it is there. Looks so so delicous.

  13. Oh this ties right in with my post on the great biryani debate! definitely a biryani and a lovely one at that!

  14. I love this biryani. If I am doing biryani, I do it this way, but I need to do your pressure cooker version soon

    I missed the discussion on Friday

  15. Came back to tell you I made the lemon rice ... had a great lunch ISG. Much thanks to you. That masala did the trick .. the recipe is for keeps now. :-)

  16. Love all types of biriyani. I just made some chicken pulao for lunch before I got to work. Good that DD2 has started looking at cookbooks :)

  17. That sounds delicious I ought to try it by replacing the chiken with soy or other veggies


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