Biriyani is a baked Indian dish of spiced rice combined with chicken, seafood, or other meats. This version omits the baking step while maintaining the authentic flavors. Whole-milk yogurt keeps its creamy texture when cooked; don't substitute low-fat yogurt, which will curdle.
3 cups water
2 teaspoons salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon saffron threads, crushed
1 1/2 cups uncooked basmati rice
1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 serrano chiles, seeded and minced
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup chopped dry-roasted cashews
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
How to Make It
Bring water, 1 teaspoon salt, and saffron to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add rice and cinnamon stick to pan. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Discard cinnamon stick.
Sprinkle chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken; sauté 5 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove chicken from pan; cover and keep warm. Add onion and 1/2 teaspoon salt to pan.
Cover, reduce heat to low, and cook 10 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Add curry and the next 5 ingredients (curry through serrano chiles); cook 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Add yogurt, stirring with a whisk; cook 3 minutes or until slightly thick, stirring constantly. Add chicken and raisins; cook 4 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Add rice; stir well to combine. Sprinkle evenly with cashews and cilantro.
I made this recipe for my family today and it was liked a lot. I ll definitely add to my list of best recipes. Next time i ll either increase the amount of ingredients or reduce the amount of rice as i had extra rice left. I ll also increase the amount of spices in order to spice it up a little bit more and add more yogurt. Thanks for posting this recipe.
I spotted this dish while looking for something to spice up dinner time. I always check out the lower scored reviews for criticisms and nearly chose something more familiar to me, but went ahead to the grocery store to stock up. I followed several suggestions: more yogurt, reduced cardamom and ginger (ground), omitted the raisins, and kept the rice separate from the rest of the dish to allow for personal mixing preference. I will absolutely make this excellent dish again! Loved it!
I have made this recipe several times and with many different substitutions, and it comes out marvelous every time. My favorite spice house (begins with "P" - not sure if I'm allowed to say :-) ) has wonderful Indian spices and I have found that using half sweet curry and half Garam Masala made it taste more like it does in my favorite restaurant. I also use cardamom pods in the rice along with a couple of cloves and a small stick of "true" (Ceylon) cinnamon, and omit the cardamom from the spice mix with the meat. I up the meat to 1 1/4 lbs so that I get a better balance of rice to meat. I also use no-fat greek yogurt, and as long as it is mixed in when the heat is low, there's no curdling. The leftovers reheat beautifully, which is great since it makes 6 very generous servings. It's a wonderful dish for company, too. One of my all-time Cooking Light faves!
I would have to say that the cardamom killed it for me. I should have listened to my nose when smelling this foreign (to me) spice. It overpowered the entire dish, but maybe it's due to the fact that I simply don't like the flavor. I also thought it was a little dry and noticed as I was pouring in the rice that I had better leave some out, and by some, I mean a solid 2 cups. The ginger might also be a little on the heavy side. If I were to make this again I would probably skip the cardamom altogether, use 1/2 tsp of ginger, and intervene in whatever way possible to make it less dry (like more yogurt or less rice). I wasn't sure about the raisins, but they ended up being a pleasant surprise.
This is a great recipe! That being said, the family thought it would benefit from cooking only 1 cup of rice w/2 cups water, and keeping all else the same. For leftovers, along with the cashews we also added some spicy peanuts we had on hand for a nice little kick. Delish!
I was searching for a last minute recipe to use up chicken thighs and came across this tasty dish. I didn't have yogurt or cashews, so substituted nonfat sour cream and toasted slivered almonds. Served it over brown rice. Delicious week night dinner.