A trademark of home-cooking in southern India, this luscious chicken dish is an authentic Hyderabadi-style biryani.
INGREDIENTS (for 8 servings):
- 1/4 cup ghee (clarified butter)
- 20 whole cloves
- 9 whole cardamom pods
- 5 bay leaves
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 5 small green chile peppers
- 2 tablespoons ginger garlic paste
- 1 (3 pound) whole chicken, cut into pieces
- 1 1/2 cups plain yogurt
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 6 fresh curry leaves (optional)
- 3 cups uncooked jasmine or white rice
- 4 1/8 cups water
- 1 sprig cilantro leaves with stems
Soak rice for 30 minutes in enough water to cover; then drain.
Meanwhile, heat ghee in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in cloves, cardamom, and bay leaves. Then stir in onion, and cook until soft, 6 to 7 minutes. Stir in chile peppers and ginger paste. Stir in yogurt, salt, and curry, and then place chicken in pan. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally and turning the chicken pieces, until only about 1 cup of liquid remains.
Mix in rice, water, and cilantro. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook for 20 minutes. Check rice after about 12 minutes; if it is dry, add 1/2 cup water, and continue cooking.
Learn how to clarify butter in this photo tutorial.