Chicken Dum Biryani ~ Weekend Cooking!

Well this Chicken Dum Briyani is one of those purely created in my mind for sheer want of keeping up my image. After a very long time, I felt I had two days to myself. That is, if you consider the fact that I stayed at home most of the time. Else I am always left with a lone Sunday, never enough for anything. And imagine I planned to cook so many new dishes, finally couldn't find time for anything. My kiddos ensured they kept me on toes. Whoever told me that weekend spent at home will energize, let me tell them again. You need energy to sustain 20 elephants and some. Few weeks back, I tried teaching the twins to show me their nose. They were so quick to learn it. I twist and turn the statement and ask them, they end up showing me their nose, only concern is, they end up digging gold! During one of my playing session with them, I suddenly remembered how Sree, my brother taught Konda to say her age. When she crossed a year, he used to ask her, 'Kutty, how old are you'. And she will lift her index finger up and say oonne!. This continued for nearly 4 years. The second year was toughest, because she won't understand why she has to show two fingers. Finally he managed to make her understand. But the first time, he did in all secrecy and sprung the surprise to all the family members one fine evening. Then we were just 5 elders smitten by our little angel. Everything she did was a great source of joy and that which engaged us for many hours. It still continues to be, just that the little angels have multiplied. And we feel 24 hrs in a day is not enough for us.

This incident came to mind and I wanted to teach the twins to tell their age. I can make Peddu stay in one place for a sec but very difficult to catch the younger one. I caught the elder and taught him to lift his index finger and say one, he ended up saying 10, I kept asking him and he kept repeating 10. I gave up and tried catching Chinnu. He lifted both this hands up and said Unn..Well I can only assume he will learn French someday. Konda was rolling down laughing each time she heard her brothers saying it. She was also quite proud of the fact that she had said it correctly. Well today I am going to try out this exercise again and see how they respond. Thinking about the Sunday lunch menu, I thought I will prepare a briyani, since I always end up making it quite spicy as in clove and ginger spice and hubby dear was reluctant on that. I was lucky that I was able to lay my hands on the chicken quite early, so thought I will prepare a Dum Briyani. Both Athamma and hubby dear enjoyed it and what more can I ask for than this.

This is slow cooking best done in handi or non-stick pan with a heavy lid and I marinated for 2 hours. It can be marinated for just 30 mins but more it does, makes the chicken very soft and tasty.

Serves: 4
Preparation Time: 15 mins
Marinating Time: 2 hrs
Cooking Time : 30 mins

Ingredients Needed:

For Marinade:

Chicken - 1 kg
Curds - 1/2 cup
Ginger Garlic paste - 1 tsp
Lemon Juice - 1/2 of a lemon.

For Paste:

Shallot or Sambar Onions - 5 medium
Green chili - 1
Ginger Garlic paste - 1/2 tsp
Mint leaves - 10
Coriander leaves - few

For Rice

Basmati Rice - 2 cups
Onions - 2 medium
Tomato - 1 small
Bay leaf - 1 big
Cloves - 2
Cardamom - 2
Cinnamon - 2"
Chilli powder - 1 & 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder - 1 tsp
Turmeric powder a pinch
Garam Masala - 1/2 tsp
Mint Leaves - about 6-7 leaves
Coriander leaves - few
Salt to taste

Oil - 1 tsp
Ghee - 3 tsp

Method to prepare:

Clean and chop chicken to required size. Rub the chicken with curd, ginger garlic paste and squeeze lime juice over it. Let it marinate for 2 hrs.

Once you are ready to start, clean and soak Basmati.

Heat a pan with ghee and oil, preferably a non-stick one. Sauté the onions, chopped in julienne. Add the whole spices also. Fry till its brown in colour.

Meanwhile, make a paste of sambar Onions, mint leaves, coriander leaves and ginger garlic paste. Add this to the onions in the pan. Fry well.

Once the paste gets well cooked and you see oil coming out, add the chicken marinade. Cook on high flame and then add the chili powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder and garam masala. Saute well so that it gets mixed to the curd and chicken. Then add the chopped tomatoes and fry for 2 mins. Once done, add the mint and coriander leaves. All these have to sautéed in high, so ensure it doesn't get burnt. After frying for 5 mins on high, simmer it till oil comes out.

By now lot of moisture would've come out of the chicken. Cook on high to get most of it evaporated.

Drain the rice from the water. And add to the chicken. Gently stir so that it gets mixed well. Simmer and let it get cooked for 5 mins. Then add 3 cups of water, cover with lid and let it cook for 20 mins in sim. Check in between to ensure its not burnt in the bottom. If required, gently stir so that its well mixed.

Since the chicken was cooked for 10 mins, and again for 20 mins, it was well cooked when I switched off.

Cooking in a pan gives you a non-sticky, yet soft briyani. For more Dum effect, you can seal the lid to the vessel with chapati dough.

This was just right on its own.

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