Mughal Biryani

There are quite a few different types of Biryani; all from different regions, using different ingredients and methods.  There are also different theories. However, one thing all Biryanis do share is rice! And the rice is always layered with meat/fish or and vegetables in between.

On my 'Deliciously me' Youtube channel you get to see Rahman, second chef at Kipling's Indian restaurant in Highgate, London, make a Moghul Biryani and to compliment the video, I have written the recipe of what he's made here.

I do suggest watching the video before trying the recipe to get a full picture. The Youtube link is on the top of my blog

Here we go! :)

*For two, just like Rahman made in our video.


2 pieces of chicken breast (cut into pieces)
2 large onions - chopped
2 large onions - Thinly sliced
3 large ladels of ghee
enough vegetable oil to cover and deep fry 2 onions
1 bowl of milk (full fat or semi fat is fine) with 2-3 teaspoons of saffron
6 cloves
4 bayleaves
4-5 cardamon
3 cinnamon sticks
3 tablespoons of garlic and ginger paste
1 tblspoon turmeric
1 tblspoon garam masala
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
1 tablespoon coriander
2 large tblspoons heaped with yogurt
salt to taste

For the rice:  

*Please note I did not pay attention to how Rahman cooked his rice as I was too busy talking with him so the rice making is from my own experience!

3 cups of washed/rinsed and soaked Basmati rice 20-30 minutes before cooking
3 cloves
1 bayleaf
2 cardamon
1 small star anise
1 tablespoon ghee
salt to taste

What to do:

Heat a large pot and add 3 ladels of ghee
Put the 2 chopped onions in and stir until brown
After a few minutes add the cloves, bay leaves, cardamon and cinnamon sticks
Keep stirring
Let them all mix together nicely for a couple of minutes and then add a ladel full of the garlic and ginger paste
*whilst they are simmering get a big pot, quarter filled with water and let the water boil (for the rice)
Go back to your pot of onions and add salt to taste
Keep stirring to avoid burning
Now add the chicken and let them simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring frequently

Back to the rice pot:
Place the cardamon, star anise, cloves and bayleaf in the boiling water
Add the rice to the pot on high
Add 1 tablespoon of ghee
Add salt to taste
Cook the rice until it is 75% done- so it's seperated and almost cooked but not fully cooked or anywhere near mushy
Drain the rice (The plan is for this to coincide with when the chicken is ready)

Whilst the chicken is cooking, get another pot and fill it with enough oil to cover the two sliced onions. When hot, add the sliced onions and let them cook until brown.
When brown, take the onions out and place on kitchen towels to soak up the excess oil

When the chicken is almost ready, add:

1 tblspoon turmeric
1 tablespoon garam masala
1/2 tablespoon cumin powder
1 tablespoon coriander
Then add 2 large heaped tablespoons of yogurt and stir

When all is ready
Grab a pirex dish and layer the rice and the chicken (this is on the video)
Cover the dish with foil as to avoid burning and put into a preheated oven marked 200c for 5-6 minutes according to Rahman

Sounds quite complicated but we'll get the hang of it! I plan to make a Biryani dish in the next few weeks, but the Hyderabadi style so I can use some of my roses!! So, do watch out for that :D

Back to Rahman's - Rahman served the dish he made, that evening for my dinner and decorated it with the roses I had brought to him. He served the Biryani with a traditional sauce that was superb and consisted of onions, cashew nuts, cream and spices. This sauce is also used for vegetable curries and Dahls.
I shall be trying that out at some point too!

Hope you enjoy making this recipe and also enjoy watching Rahman make it too!

Raha xx

*Please note Rahman made the Biryani on my request and they don't serve this particular Biryani at the restaurant

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