A very light biriyani, which is “white” compared to other biriyanis, and hence the name…
Once upon a time, when I had started blogging, I remember bragging how much my family loved biriyanis and that is why I was trying all sorts of different biriyanis. But as my girls grew up, their interest in biriyanis took a very steep downturn, faster than I had expected and hence went for a toss my interest to try new versions. They became keener on only having a ghee rice-chicken curry lunch, than to have a biriyani, which needed a lot of nitpicking of so many tiny bits and pieces in them. Does it seem familiar to you? All the fried onions, nuts and spices I painstakingly and lovingly add into a biriyani ends up in a heap on the side of their plates. Naturally, my interest to cook biriyanis vaned and I haven’t been making it much unless it is requested for or we have guests. How times change… 🙂
During one of my casual browsing, I came across this “white” chicken biriyani, which didn’t have any onions or tomatoes to be chopped, had a simple ground blend to go into the chicken and the sauce was just whatever stock the chicken leaves out. We actually love a biriyani with a lot of masala, so I wasn’t sure how this would go with my folks. Still I made it, because it really appealed to my “lazy cook” side. The biriyani has very limited ingredients. The masala is a more off-white but still doesn’t have much of color. If you feel that the lack of ingredients would actually hamper the taste of the final dish, think again… It doesn’t. In fact, everything you add into it lends its distinct flavor and makes the end result really delicious. I love the fact that it uses very limited ghee in it. In fact, this biriyani can be made richer by adding a little cashew paste and/or cream along with the yogurt, but I wouldn’t to keep the guilt factor of eating a biriyani on the lower side. 😉 Do give it a try when you feel like cooking biriyani but don’t want to do all the chopping… 😉
Sofiyani Murg Biriyani | Hydrebadi White Chicken Biryani
- 1 kg chicken
- 1 inch pc ginger
- 6-8 cloves garlic
- 3-4 green chillies
- 2 tbsp yogurt heaped
- 1 tsp white pepper der
- 1 tsp garam masala powder
- 1 tsp shahjeera
- Salt to taste
- 2+1 tbsp ghee
- 3 cups basmati rice
- Whole spices (1 cardamom, 1 clove, 1 bay leaf, some pepper)
- Fried onion and mint leaves for garnishing
- Cut the chicken into medium sized pieces. Wash and drain well.
- In a grinder, grind together ginger, garlic, green chillies and yogurt into a smooth paste. Add in to the chicken.
- Add ingredients from pepper powder to salt and rub well into the chicken.
- Allow the mixture to marinate for at least an hour or as much as possible.
- In a cooking pot (preferably the one for dum), add 2 tbsp ghee. Add the marinated chicken, completely with all the marinade - you may use some water to clean up all the marinade - and allow the chicken to cook on low flame, stirring occasionally, till almost done.
- Meanwhile, wash the basmati rice. Cook in lots of water with some salt and the whole spices till done. Drain and set aside.
- Once the chicken is almost done, layer the cooked rice on top of it. Sprinkle some fried onions and chopped mint leaves and the remaining ghee on top. Cover the lid tightly and cook on dum for around 15-20 minutes.
- Switch off and allow it to rest for another 10 minutes.
- To serve, fluff the rice to mix with the masala. Serve hot with raita, pickle and a thick gravy if needed.