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Authentic Chicken Biryani

Vaquas – At long last, I am releasing my Authentic Chicken Biryani recipe. It’s a flavorful, authentic dish popular all across the South Asian subcontinent. This blog post will explore all the various components of making a perfect Biryani, one which I have been fine-tuning over the past six years (much to my daughter’s delight). It brings me joy to say that any party or occasion  of mine wherein I serve biryani is always met with praise. For the friends who have been asking for the recipe, the new visitors (welcome!!) who were intrigued by the pictures, and for all biryani-lovers  out there, I’m so excited to present to you my recipe. 

3 plates of briyani

WHAT IS BIRYANI?

Biryani is a rice dish wrapped in a delicious meat gravy. Its layers of rice and the meat gravy will be among the most aromatic smells you will encounter. It’s a very popular dish in Pakistan and India. The dish originally hailed from the Persians, who brought it to Delhi, India where it spread like wildfire across the South Asia. As with many cultural staples, each region has its own adaptations when it comes to making biryani. I like to describe my biryani as the biryani you’d find at somebody’s marriage back home, or the shadiyoon wali briyani (the briyani you get at weddings.)

briyani and royal rice

HOW TO MAKE CHICKEN BIRYANI?

  1. Make the masala for the chicken biryani in a powder form.
  2. Make the chicken gravy.
  3. Parboil the rice.
  4. Layer the rice and chicken gravy (will give details below).
  5. Steam the biryani (dum).

rice without royal

TWO TYPES OF BIRYANI

As I was guiding Sarah (my wife) in making the Chicken Biryani, I had to explain to her that there are actually two different forms of biryani:

  1. Bati huwi biryani – That just means your biryani is sitting down. When biryani sits down, it’s a bad batch of biryani which means either the rice was overdone prior to the layering process,  the gravy was too runny, or too much water and/or oil was added to the pot after the draining step.
  2. Kari huwi briyani– That means standing biryani which is what we want. Pure perfection. When your biryani is Kari huwi, it means the rice is  parboiled just fine, drained at the perfect time. The rice ISN’T Soggy, the right amount of oil and water is at the bottom of the pan, and the gravy is just the right consistency and amount.

TEXTURE OF THE RICE IN BIRYANI

Biryani is composed of a motley assortment of spices, masalas, vegetables, and, of course, the Basmati rice. Each grain of rice, arguably one of the most important parts of this delicious concoction, is long, fluffy, and laden with masala. When perfectly made the long-form grains should be blooming and airy, basking in the luxurious aura that Basmati rice is so known for. It shouldn’t be too soggy, too short, or break apart very easily, as this may ruin the dish.

INGREIDENTS OF BRIYANI

INGREDIENTS FOR THE BIRYANI MASALA

  • 6 dried long red pepper
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 3 tbsp corriander seeds
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp caraway seeds (Shahi Zeera)
  • 3 pieces of Javitri
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 10 whole cloves
  • 4 black cardamom
  • 3 star anise
  • 10 black peppercorns
  • 10 green cardamom pods
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1/3 of nutmeg seeds
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt

royal rice

HOW TO MAKE THE MASALA FOR THE BIRYANI?

  • In a fry pan, on medium to low heat, lightly dry roast nutmeg, dried long red pepper, bay leaves, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, caraway seeds, mace, cinnamon sticks, cloves, black cardamom, star anise, black peppercorns, green cardamoms, black cardamoms, and fennel seeds until you smell their fragrance.
  • Cool it down for 10 minutes.
  • Grind the masala in a spice grinder until it’s in powder form.
  • Now mix in the red chili powder, turmeric, and salt.
  • Set aside

BRIYANI MASALA

HOW DO YOU MAKE THE GRAVY FOR THE BIRYANI?

  • In a medium size pot, on medium heat, add oil and heat it up.
  • Next add green cardamom and black peppercorns and now lightly sauté it for about 30 seconds.
  • Now add the onions and sauté the onion until they are golden brown.
  • Next add ginger garlic paste and mix well.
  • Add in the chicken and mix well.
  • Add tomatoes and yogurt and let it cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Now add the biryani masala and mix well. (Remember you are only adding 6 tbsp; save the rest for future use.)
  • Next add in red chili powder, plum, lemon juice, and salt and mix well.
  • Add a whole green pepper and mix well.
  • Let everything cook, stir occasionally during this process.
  • When the chicken is fully cooked set aside, the process will take around 10-15 minutes.
  • Turn off the stove and set the gravy aside.

oil in the potgolden brown the onion chicken and sauté it til it changes color along with ginger garlic pasteAdd tomatoes and yogurt briyani masala and the other spices let it cook

WHAT BRAND OF RICE SHOULD BE USED?

In my experience the Royal Chef’s Secret Basmati Rice has been an irreplaceable option. My wife’s family has been using Royal rice for more than 20 years, and I’m enamored of the company and the impeccable long grains of rice which have served me well time and time again.

holding rice pose

HOW TO PARBOIL RICE PERFECTLY?

As I mentioned above, I strongly encourage you to use Royal Chef’s Secret Basmati Rice and follow these steps:

  • Presoak the rice in water for 20 min.
  • Drain the rice.
  • In a large pot, on medium heat, add water, salt, bay leaves, star anise, and cloves.
  • Bring it to a boil.
  • Add the drained rice in the pot.
  • Now let the rice cook for 6-8 minutes (remember you’re doing this on medium heat). Check they cooked up to 75%.
  • Remove the pot from the stove and drain the water.
  • Set aside.

royal rice plus biryani

HOW TO LAYER YOUR BIRYANI?

  • In a large pot, add 3 tbsp oil and 1 tbsp water. Scatter that across the bottom of the pot.
  • To set the first layer lay out 25% of the rice in the bottom of the pot as your first layer, then sprinkle 3 pinches of food coloring on top of the rice. Next place some of the chicken gravy that you made earlier and on top sprinkle some fresh cilantro and fresh mint.
  • Repeat the previous step two more times.
  • On top of the fourth layer of rice, you shouldn’t have any chicken gravy left, so your fourth layer will be rice, food coloring, cilantro, mint, and lastly now add kewra to the pot.

add oil and wateradd some rice and color add gravycilantro and mintadd some rice on topthe top layer with rice, cilantro, and mint

As I have mentioned countless times, this is one of my favorite recipes on the blog and I really hope you try it out. We have a lot of Pakistani traditional recipes on our blog such as: Achari Keema, Authentic Kofta Curry (Meatball Curry), and Authentic Mutton Karahi (Karahi Gosht). If you have any questions about our recipes or techniques, recipe requests, or if you just want to say hi, please feel free to message us and, as always, if you try any of our recipes be sure to tag us on Instagram @twoclovesinapot. Find us on Pinterest too, @twoclovesinapot. Please subscribe to our newsletter. We value honest feedback.

This post is sponsored by Royal . 

royal plus biryani

LET’S MAKE AUTHENTIC CHICKEN BIRYANI 

royal rice plus biryani
Print Recipe
5 from 11 votes

Authentic Chicken Biryani

Authentic Chicken Biryani is a rice dish wrapped in a delicious meat gravy. Its layers of rice and the meat gravy will be among the most aromatic smells you will encounter. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time1 hr 50 mins
Total Time2 hrs
Course: Main
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: aunthentic indian biryani, authentic, authentic chicken briyani, biryani, chicken biryani, student biryani
Calories: 457kcal
Author: Sarah Mirza

Ingredients

Biryani Masala

  • 6 dried long red peppers
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 3 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp caraway seeds shahi zera
  • 3 pieces mace javitri
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 10 whole cloves
  • 4 black cardamoms
  • 3 star anise
  • 10 black peppercorns
  • 10 green cardamom pods
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • netmug
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt

Gravy

  • 2 lbs chicken leg quarter
  • cup olive oil
  • 1 medium onion finely sliced
  • 4 tbsp ginger garlic paste
  • 6 tbsp briyani masala that was made earlier
  • 5 green cardamoms
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • 5 black peppercorns
  • 3 whole green pepper
  • 4 plum Aloo Bukara (get the wet ones not the dried ones)
  • 4 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tomatoes finely chopped
  • ½ cup yogurt
  • tsp salt

Rice

  • cups rice i always use Royal Chef's Secret Extra Long Grain Basmati Rice
  • 5 cup water
  • 2 star anise
  • 4 cloves
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 bay leaves

Layering

  • orange food coloring (make sure it's orange for real authentic look)
  • 3 tbsp oilve oil
  • 2 tbsp water
  • ½ tsp kewra
  • ½ bunch cilantro finely chopped
  • ½ bunch mint finely chopped

Instructions

Briyani Masala

  • In a fry pan, on medium to low heat, lightly dry roast nutmeg, dried long red pepper, bay leaves, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, caraway seeds, mace, cinnamon sticks, cloves, black cardamom, star anise, black peppercorns, green cardamoms, black cardamoms, and fennel seeds until you smell their fragrance.
  • Cool it down for 10 minutes.
  • Grind the masala in a grinder until it's powder form.
  • Now mix in the red chili powder, turmeric, and salt.
  • Set aside

Gravy

  • In a medium size pot, on medium heat, add oil and heat it up.
  • Next add green cardamom and black peppercorns and now lightly sauté it for about 30 seconds.
  • Now add the onions and sauté the onion until they are golden brown.
  • Next add ginger garlic paste and mix well.
  • Add in the chicken and mix well.
  • Add tomatoes and yogurt and let it cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Now add the briyani masala and mix well. (Remeber you are only adding 6 tbsp save the rest for future use.)
  • Next add in red chili powder, plum, lemon juice, and salt and mix well.
  • Add whole green pepper and mix well.
  • Let everything cook, stir occasionally during this process.
  • When the chicken is fully cooked set aside, the process will take around 10-15 minutes.
  • Turn off the stove and set the gravy aside.

Rice

  • Presoak the Rice in water for 20 min.
  • Drain the water.
  • In a large pot, on medium heat, add water, salt, bay leaves, star anise, and cloves.
  • Bring it to a boil.
  • Then add the drained rice in the pot.
  • Now let the rice cook for 6-8 minutes remember you're doing this on medium heat. Check the are cooked upto 75%.
  • Remove the pot from the stove and drain the water.
  • Set aside.

Layering

  • In a large pot, add 3 tbsp oil and 2 tbsp water. Scatter that across the bottom of the pot.
  • To set the first layer lay out 25% rice in the bottom of the pot as your first layer. Then sprinkle 3 pinches food coloring on top of the rice. Next place some of chicken gravy that you made earlier and on top sprinkle some fresh cilantro and fresh mint.
  • Keep repeating the pervious step two more times.
  • On top of the fourth layer of rice, you shouldn't have any chicken gravy left, so your fourth layer will be rice, food coloring, cilantro, mint, and lastly now add kewra to the pot.

The Steam Step (Dum)

  • Wrap the lid with alumium foil.
  • Cover the lid, and now place something heavy on top maybe like a pressure cooker, or a heavy pot.
  • Now turn the stove on high for 1 min only.
  • Now turn the stove on medium heat for the next 5 minutes.
  • Next turn the stove on low for the next 30 minutes
  • Now turn off the stove.
  • Don't open for the next 10 minutes.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 457kcal | Carbohydrates: 63g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 158g | Saturated Fat: 34g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 25g | Monounsaturated Fat: 88g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 343mg | Sodium: 110mg | Potassium: 41mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 60IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 103mg | Iron: 2mg
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sky
sky
4 months ago

5 stars
I made this last night. it is so good. best briyani recipe out there.

rani
rani
4 months ago

5 stars
AHHHH THIS BIRYANI RECIPE IS TO DIE FOR!
REMINDS ME OF BIRYANI IN PAKISTAN
INSTRUCTIONS ARE REALLY EASY TO FOLLOW. 

Nida
Nida
4 months ago

5 stars
the best briyani recipe out there

Naila
Naila
3 months ago

This was pretty good! Typically don’t make biryani or anything for that matter at home, but I tried this and it turned out great!!

Rebecca
Rebecca
3 months ago

5 stars
Very yummy!!! Huge fan of Indian food and especially this recipe, my husband loved it

Maha Khan
Maha Khan
3 months ago

5 stars
OMG! I made this biryani in dawat on the last weekend and everyone loved that. This is the actual Pakistani taste Biryani. Thank you so much guys to give your family recipe to us.

Hina Javed
Hina Javed
3 months ago

5 stars
Wow this was so yummy. Thank you guys for this. I doubled the recipe.

Lauren
Lauren
3 months ago

5 stars
I’ve never had great experiences with following recipes but WOW this one was truly out of this world. 1000/10

Nancy Oswald
Nancy Oswald
3 months ago

5 stars
This was too good!!! Do you guys have a recipe for Chicken Curry.

Shahnaz
Shahnaz
3 months ago

5 stars
I can’t believe I made this. it was so delicious. my rice always comes out soggy but today after following your recipe to the T; they came out perfect. Thank you Vaquas.

Fatima
Fatima
3 months ago

5 stars
Excellent

Abeer
Abeer
3 months ago

5 stars
excellent recipe, thank you so much for teaching me how to make a perfect biryani without using any packet masala. I’m planning to make your Nihari this coming weekend

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