A special Biryani treat and a great way to refresh & recycle a Saturday night surplus curry !
A good recipe from extra curry left over , on one of those lazy Sundays when you want to eat something special, good & quick with little or no efforts is possible too if you have a pre made batch of Rice & caramelised onions in the fridge ....
Its a good idea to always make a batch of “Birista ” what these golden fried onions are called in India , always as a back up for all these special dishes like - biryani & nihari s and many more , believe me it’s a big time saver .
1 cup basmati rice (leftover, cooked rice can also be used)
2 whole cloves
1/2” cinnamon stick
1/2 tsp shahi jeera
2 bay leaves
2 green cardamom
1 black cardamom
3 to 4 cups water to boil rice
1 Tbsp oil
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup mint leaves chopped
1/2 cup fresh coriander leaves chopped
2 cups of any left over curry like chicken, lamb ,channa or vegetables !
2 large or 3 small onions, peeled and thinly sliced
2-3 Tbsp. oil
Salt to taste (curry & rice already has salt so optional
A few strands of saffron, soaked in 2 tbsp. warm milk or water. ( optional)
Instructions To ensemble -
Wash and soak rice for 10-20 minutes. drain and keep aside.
Boil water in a pan, along with whole spices , 1 tablespoon of oil and salt.
Add rice. Boil briskly until rice has 70% done - (1/4 uncooked grain remaining when pressed between a finger and thumb.)
carefully Drain in a colander , spreading carefully, better to spoon out rice with a big slotted spoon . Otherwise rice will keep cooking and will become sticky. Keep aside.
Heat oil in a pan and fry onions until brown, see picture. Drain and keep aside.
peel & cut potatoes into 1/2 . piece with a fork over to allow marination , rub 1/2 tsp each of salt & turmeric on the potatoes, leave for 10-15 minutes to marinate & drain .
fry potatoes in hot oil ( same oil where onions are fried can be used )
In a thick bottom, nonstick pan add oil & spread all over, add your chosen curry and 1/3rd of the fried onions , add 1/4 cup of chopped mint & coriander on top , Heat it through. Now you are ready to assemble the biryani rice & potatoes
Place half the rice in the pan and spread it evenly. Sprinkle half of the saffron strands in warm milk / water ,
layer with fried potatoes
top with the remaining rice
sprinkle saffron all over ,
add 2 Tablespoons of hot oil from the fried onions ( as this is now aromatised with onion flavour
Spread the fried onions evenly on top with little more chopped mint & coriander. ( leave some for final garnish )
Cover with a sheet of doubled aluminium foil and heat in a pre-heated oven at 180-200C for 20-25 minutes, until heated through.
OR You can cook same on a medium gas flame too with a think Girdle below the pan (so as it does not scorch the chicken & prevent it from catching at the bottom )
Enjoy piping hot with some Curds & chopped onion, tomatoes & cucumber salsa !!