Bhatkal Biriyani

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Hmmm…. again a day when I am suffering from a mental block!!! I thought I could sleep right through the day, but then I ended up waking up quite early (by my standards, that is!!!) and staring at the sleeping kids. Parents will definitely agree that there is something lovely in watching sleeping children. They look so angelish then… they must have gone off to sleep after all their mischief, but when they sleep, there is nobody in the world as cute as they are!!! πŸ™‚


Since my head is blank with nothing much to blabber about, let me go straight to today’s recipe. Oneconfession I have to make – this is the first picture on this blog for which I am doing a touch up by myself. I do understand that my pictures are sometimes really substandard, thanks to a lot of restrictions I have. I don’t want to make it an excuse for not improving the quality of them on the blog! My pictures are all night pictures, as I do all my cooking at night, apart from weekends, and early morning, I am off to work. The picture of the Chococustard Pudding of yesterday had some really good feedback, mainly because I guess, the photo turned well as it was taken with natural light, which my photographs hardly get. Jehanne has been trying to put into my head the importance of using a photo enhancing tool to touch up the pictures before putting it up on the blog, but plainly, I have been lazy!!! It’s more that than anything else. Finally, I downloaded Photoscape yesterday, as my first time trial and this is the first picture I am doing a touch up. I need an honest feedback from all of you, to learn and improve. I know if I don’t buck up myself, my blog is not going to grow… I guess I have to also give a big shout out to Febina for being extra frank in her comment in my last post, as well. Sometimes, you need such hits to really wake you up!!! πŸ™‚


We as a family, love biriyanis for our weekend meal. A Friday is incomplete without a biriyani, and being the person I am, I love to pull out my books or files and go through the bundles for some interesting biriyani recipe all the time. This is another one from the weekends, a very easy one, I should say. With very limited ingredients and time, I guarantee you this is a winner!!! So off to the recipe…Β Recipe adapted from “Non Vegeterian Recipes” of Zubeida Obeid




Updated on December 23, 2016 with new pictures… I can’t believe that the below picture was the first that I actually worked on Photoscape. πŸ˜€ Alhamdulillah, little here and there I have learned how to use that software to make my pictures look a little more better off! πŸ˜‰ As you can see, the post is getting some new pictures, since I cooked this biriyani for lunch today. I would say that this is the fastest update on the blog – cooked, clicked and uploaded within a matter of hours! πŸ˜€ I have slightly tweaked the recipe as well, which I am updating in the recipe card… This is definitely one of the simplest biriyanis I have tried, with no complications whatsoever… If you are wondering where/ what Bhatkal is, it is a little place in the state of Karnataka, very close to Mangalore. I had an ex-colleague from that area, who retired in September this year. He was a gem to work with and I really miss him, to say the least. Hope you like the new update on the post! πŸ™‚



Below is the old picture… πŸ™‚

Here’s the link to doing your dum for biriyani

Bhatkal Biriyani

Course Rice
Cuisine Indian
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 4 -6
Author Rafeeda


  • 3 cups basmati rice
  • 1 kg chicken cut into medium pieces
  • 4 tbsp ghee
  • 4 large onions sliced thinly
  • 1 tbsp cashew nuts chopped
  • 6 green chiilies slit (more for spiciness)
  • 1 tbsp ginger paste
  • 1 tbsp garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp garam masala powder
  • 2 large tomatoes chopped
  • 1/4 cup mint leaves chopped
  • 1/4 cup coriander leaves chopped
  • 1/2 cup yogurt
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1 tbsp rosewater
  • 5-6 strands of saffron soaked in 2 tbsp warm milk
  • Salt to taste


  • Wash and soak the rice in water for half an hour.
  • Boil water (around 10 cups) with salt.. Once boiled, add the rice and cook till almost 80% done. Drain immediately and set aside. While checking the rice, do ensure that there is a slight bite inside.
  • In a pressure cooker, heat two tbsp ghee and fry one onion till brown. rain and set aside.
  • Fry the cashew nuts as well. Set aside with the fried onions. .
  • Add another tbsp of ghee and saute the onions and chillies, with a pinch of salt till transparent.
  • Add the chicken, tomatoes, ginger paste, garlic paste, 1/2 tbsp garam masala, turmeric powder and salt, give it a nice stir and cook for one whistle.
  • Switch off the flame and empty the pressure off the cooker. Open the lid, stir in the lime juice and yogurt and mix well to incorporate.
  • In a deep saucepan, put the chicken masala. Layer the rice on the top of it.
  • Now sprinkle the chopped mint and coriander leaves, along with the remaining 1/2 tbsp garam masala powder, the fried onions and cashews, the rosewater and the saffron soaked milk, as well as the remaining one tbsp of ghee.
  • Close the top well with aluminium foil and close the lid tight.
  • Heat a chappathi tava on the gas stove and keep the saucepan on top for dum for 25-30 minutes. Serve warm with raita and pappad!!!


You can use mutton instead of chicken in this recipe, only adapt the cooking time accordingly
Since there is no use of chilli powder or pepper in this recipe, add as much as green chillies as per your spice quotient.

Join the Conversation

  1. Looking very delicious…photoyum valare nannayittund…..perunnal biriyaneede hangover ippozhum mariyittilla..ivide!!!!!!!

    1. Thank u so much shaai… πŸ™‚

  2. biryani luks yummy….. hey i use for my photos and all i do is crop and add the watermark and nothing else… also too lazy for photo editing… πŸ™‚

    1. Thank u so much razina 4 the suggestions… πŸ™‚

  3. Yum to biriyani. We are big eaters of rice though my other does not eat chicken. I am fine with this dish and adore the many notes of flavors. Your pictures are improving and you are right, editing and touching up are all about time and sitting in front of the laptop for more hours. I try because I take pictures in the night, those things you can't avoid when you have to cook for the family and when you need a home cooked dish.

    1. That's the thing vich gets me off – the time in front of the pc! Hope I'l get used 2Iit… thanks a lot, nava…

  4. kudos for taking a hit so well.i do sometimes get lazy to do the touchup then again i gear this briyani.

    1. We shud b ready 2 take the hits +vely then only we can grow right… πŸ™‚ thanks a lot meena…

  5. I know food photography is not an easy task and its need loads and loads of patience,can see you are improving very much with your food clicks, dont bother to give them touch up, that wont harm it. COming to this briyani, i dont mind inviting myself to your place if its briyani, love briyani very much.

    1. Words such as these coming frm a seasoned blogger like u really warms me akka… thank u so much 4 ur encouragement!!! πŸ™‚

  6. I must admit that even i didn't give much importance to food photography, thinking that the dish is perfect and when people try out they will come to know how awesome it tastes. But when i visited many of our fellow bloggers, unknowingly i used to look the picture first and then the recipe. Then i realized, as an outsider, how i approached a recipe. Later on checked many websites to know little about food photography and started experimenting on my dishes. Got some tips from my husband (he has a passion for photography) Its true that its very difficult to make my family wait while i take snaps of the dishes πŸ™‚ But somehow i manages. This is only a beginning for you…Go on and you can take better pictures like a pro…

    1. Thank u so much nimmy 4 ur kind words… I am also trying 2 learn within my current limits… πŸ™‚

  7. Rafee,yummy biriyani.
    Photographing and editing is a test of patience and time.Your athishaya pathiri and doughnut pics were really good.Placing food in the same location should help you. Sometimes iphone works better in low light than regular cameras. Anyway all the best in photoscape.

    1. I have a couple of spots I work at, but now I've settled down @ the kitchen as v just recently changed the lights n dat's giving me some good support! Smtms I do find my Grand giving me much better pix dan my Nikon…thank u so much Meena 4 ur support always… πŸ™‚

    1. Thank u so much priya…

  8. Sounds easy and looks delish Rafs!

    1. Thank u so much dear.. welcome back!!! πŸ™‚

  9. Hmm..yum ! I love Subeida Ubaid's recipe too..Your Biriyani tempts me to have some.Don't worry too much about clicks Rafee.If you are particular and you are confined to night clicks why don't you go for a photo studio ? 50-56 usd will fetch you a standard one dear ..

    1. Me 2!!! πŸ™‚ when I get my own space, a little space 4 the photoshoots is definitely in the pipeline… thanks a lot dear…

  10. The biryani seems to be authentic, aromatic and tasty!!
    I too have recently started food blogging and i use my phone's camera to take picture, hence my pics too are not great. But i read about food photography on lots blogs and try to improve. You can try reading some of those posts and see if they help.

    1. Thanks a lot dear… I too do a lot of reading on food photography n am trying 2 take some tips…

  11. Yummyy Biriyani…feeling hungry. Photo has come out well Rafee. I suggest you should use a dark coloured plate for a light coloured dish and vice versa , that will add the beauty to the dish.

    1. Thank u so much 4 ur suggestions dear… πŸ™‚

  12. That's sounds simple in making…would love to try this version…I am huge fan of one pot meals and biryani is my fav….

    1. Thank u so much lubna…

  13. Interesting and simple recipe… I should give a try yummy…

    1. Thank u so much rumana…

  14. u know Rafee, I am always in love with your recipes whatever u wanna say about the photography , they are not bad at all, and of course I would vouch for touch up as I do that all the time :P..and I totally concur on the lighting issue, thats why my posts is so sporadic as I rely too much on natural lighting!
    All said, I can have this biryani any day !

    1. Jehanne, u r such a sweetheart xoxo… πŸ™‚ thank u 4 always being there 4 me!

  15. Rafee your writing takes over the rest if you ask me and you know it. Your pictures are not so bad either. Yeah me to vouch for touch up.. πŸ™‚
    The biriyani looks really delicious..:-) never had this before!

    1. Hehe… then I guess I've 2 stop posting recipes al2gether… πŸ˜€ thanks a lot dear…

  16. I don't eat meat..lovely click..

    1. Thank u so much gayathri…

  17. Absolutely delicious biryani. Never saw this biryani, shall tryout soon.

    today's post:

    1. Thank u so much sanoli…

  18. Thats a great step Rafee..I too never used to edit pics till last march,then Priya of cook like priya suggested me to try that and I am loving it. Practise and experiment with camera and with tie ur pixcs will improve. Whenever possible try to make use of day light too..but for me it doesnt really matter ,I love ur blog anyway πŸ™‚

    1. Thank u so much 4 ur lovely words, vinee… πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ xoxo

  19. I'm also a big fan of Biriyani Rafi…Ur Biriyani luks so yummy n delicious…n I can feel the aroma here πŸ™‚

  20. and tz true….that the photographs luks naturally nice when it is taken under daylight

    1. Thank u so much ramya… πŸ™‚

  21. Hey Rafeeda….the biriyani looks awesome…mouthwatering….

    Regarding the pics…it will come by practice and ya natural light does help a lot…keep practicing, play around with different options of the camera…go through online tutorials and u will get there πŸ™‚

    1. Thank u so much anupa… natural daylight is vat I dont get 90 percent of the time!!! πŸ™‚

  22. the biriyani looks superb..

    1. Thank u so much ruxana…

  23. This biryani made my mouth water, simple and delicious! It is quite a challenge to take pictures at night. Don't worry dear, your pictures are good enough. I still need to improve my photography.

    1. Thank u so much ambreen… ur pics r simple n straight, I really like them… πŸ™‚

  24. Biryani looks wonderful dear ! I'm very lazy to touch up my pics too,hats off to ur effort the pic looks very good πŸ™‚ True nothing beats daylight when it comes to a good pic πŸ™‚

    1. Thank u so much 4 ur kind words reni… πŸ™‚

  25. Biryani looks awesome and mouth watering Rafee.. I'd say superb clicks dear πŸ™‚

    1. Thank u so much nilu… πŸ™‚

  26. looked d name twice..but wtever d recipe style,if it is birynai cant say no..super…

    1. thank u so much usha…

  27. Zubeida obeid is my grandmom πŸ™‚

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      That’s so good that you came over here… πŸ™‚

  28. The link from your Kheema biriyani brought me here and more so the name Bhatkal intensified my curiosity. I am from Udupi and Bhatkal is close by – so I have heard this place name a 1000 times – but not that they had a version of Biriyani that was so their own:) Good one and as you said easy too!!

    1. Rafeeda AR Author says:

      Yes, it is a super easy biriyani that I keep going to when I feel lazy… πŸ™‚ Thank you so much Ria for visiting an old post…

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