Biryani – with a twist

I have meticulously typed up this recipe after keenly observing my mom make the famed traditional dish with a difference. Coconut milk lends a unique and rich flavor to the popular dish with a mouth watering twist. Follow the instructions carefully. Share your feedback if you get to try it. 🙂


Refined Oil – 2 tablespoons
Maggi Magic Cubes – 2 (Chicken or Vegetable)


Whole spices for tempering:

Cardamom – 4 pods
Anise petals/seeds – 4
Cinnamon sticks – 5 small
Bay leaves – 2
Cloves – 5 (Not shown in the pic…but don’t miss including this ingredient)
Saump/Fennel Seeds – 1 full teaspoon

Vegetables for tempering:

Green Chillies – 3 (split in 2s)
Large Onion chopped lengthwise – 1
Large tomatoes chopped – 2
Ginger Garlic paste – 1 full teaspoon
Mint/Pudina leaves – 1 cup, lightly shredded
Coriander leaves with stems – 1 cup, lightly shredded
Coconut – Half a Coconut grated
Biryani long grain rice – 1 large measuring cup + 1 medium measuring cup. Washed and drained.
Lime juice – 1 tablespoon freshly extracted.

Extracting Coconut Milk:

Use a blender/mixer/grinder to thoroughly grind the grated coconut. Drain it to extract fresh coconut milk. Use water to extract milk properly. Use the same large measuring cup you used for measuring rice to measure the extracted coconut milk. If it is less then 3 measuring cups add water to dilute it, till you get three large measuring cups of coconut milk. The amount of rice used here requires 3 parts liquid. Keep aside the coconut milk in a bowl.

Marinating chicken or plant based alternative or mutton:

Chicken or Mutton or Plant based alternative cut into cubes – 1/2 Kg
Ginger garlic paste – 2 full teaspoons
Curd/Yoghurt – 4 tablespoons
Garam masala powder – 1 teaspoon
Red Chilli powder – 2 teaspoon
Salt – as appropriate. Add salt only in case of Chicken. Else don’t add salt at this point. Adding salt to marinate mutton, can make it rubbery.
Mix all the ingredients and freeze for a minimum of 2 hours.

Yoghurt/Curd Chutney:

Finely chopped tomatoes – 1/2 cup
Finely chopped green chillies – 1/2 cup

Finely chopped green chillies – 1 teaspoon

Yoghurt/Curd – 1 cup
Salt to taste

Cooking Procedure:

1.Heat oil in a large pressure cooker.
2.Add anise seeds, cardamom, cinnamon, bay leaves, cloves and stir.
3. After a few seconds add Saump/Fennel seeds and stir.
4. After few seconds add onions and chillies and stir.
5. After about a minute or two once the onions turn translucent and start becoming lightly golden, add the ginger garlic paste and stir.
5. After a few seconds add the chopped tomatoes.
6. Add the marinated chicken or mutton or the plant based alternative
7. Blend all thoroughly.
8. Add coriander and pudina/mint and mix.
9. Close the cooker lid without the weight. Let it simmer for 15 to 20 mins till the Chicken or Mutton or the Plant based alternative is cooked and tender.
10. Add the extracted coconut milk
11. Add the washed and drained rice along with crushed Maggi Magic cubes
12. Add lime juice
13. Bring to a boil
14. Close cooker lid. Place the pressure cooker weight on top
15. Cook on high flame. Immediately are the after the second whistle on the cooker sounds, switch off the stove
16. Let it sit for 20 to 30 mins till the pressure completely leaves
17. Remove the weight. It should come off easily since there is no pressure. Open the lid and gently stir the Biryani.
18. Serve hot with Yoghurt/Curd chutney on the side.

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