Saturday, July 13, 2013

Kolkata's Chicken Biriyani

Well, I must confess one thing before I write anything on this topic. I didn't have any clue , that Biriyani could be made without aloo, egg and kewra or itr flavour!! The "kolkata-style" biriyani was only "biriyani" I was aware of. It'only few years (7-8 years), I came to know about other kind of biriyani
But it remained my favourite. Light yet flavourful...and yes I love those juicy potatoes. May be I am one of those few weirdos who like potato and rice in biriyani even more than meat 
I make it very often at home, as we both love it. The process is bit time taking. But outcome is awesome. However, I prefer to make the biriyani masala, birista and meat marination in prior. So that, I can save time and energy. I make it with chicken most of the time, because it it easy and healthy. Here is the recipe :

Ingredients for Biriyani masala:
  1. Cinnamon 1 stick
  2. Green cardamom 6-8
  3. Black cardamom 1
  4. Cloves 5-6
  5. Fennel 1 tea spoon
  6. Caraway seed 1/2 tea spoon
  7. Nutmeg 1 small piece (not the whole nutmeg)
  8. Mace 2 florets
  9. Allspice 6-8
  10. Black peppercorn 7-8
  • Dry roast all the spices separately till they are nicely fragrant. Mix them together and grind them to a fine powder.
Making "Birista":
  1. 3 large onion (thinly sliced)
  2. Refined oil (enough for deep frying)
  • Heat enough oil for deep frying. Add onion slices to it. Fry until crisp and golden brown. Stir continuously while frying. And fry in batches to avoid it making lumpy.
Chicken marination :
  1. Chicken 700-750 gm (cut into large pieces)
  2. Hung curd 4 table spoon
  3. Ginger paste 1 table spoon
  4. Garlic paste 1 table spoon
  5. Chilli powder 1 tea spoon
  6. Biriyani masala 1 and 1/2 table spoon
  7. Birista / golden fried crisp onion 1/2 cup
  8. Refined oil 2 table spoon
  9. Kewra water 4-5 drops
  • Wash and pat dry chicken. Marinate chicken with all the ingredients and keep it in fridge overnight.

Preparing other ingredients:
  1. 2 potato medium size ( cut into halves)
  2. 4 eggs hard boiled.
  • Marinate potatoes and eggs with salt and pinch of biriyani masala. Fry them to golden.
Preparing saffron milk:
  1. Saffron 10-12 strands
  2. Milk 1/2 cup (warm milk)
  3. Kewra water 6-8 drops
  4. Rose water 1/2 tea spoon
  5. Mitha itr 1 drop
  • Mix saffron with warm milk. Leave it for 10 minutes. Mix kewra water, rose water and mitha itr in this milk. Saffron milk is now ready to use.
Cooking chicken:
  • Bring the chicken to room temperature.
  • Take a pan. Heat 3 table spoon fat ( I used ghee and refined oil half and half). Add marinated chicken. Fried potato pieces. Cook over medium to low heat till chicken is tender. Add salt. Cook until there is no more watery gravy only oil left. But chicken should not get too dry. It should be moist and tender. Your chicken is ready. Now carefully take out the oil and keep separately.

Preparing rice:
  1. Good quality Basmati rice 700 gm ( to serve 4 person... I used India Gate basmati rice)
  2. Refined oil 1 tea spoon
  3. Salt to taste
  4. Bay leaf 2 
  5. Caraway seed 1 tea spoon
  6. Mace 1 floret
  7. Black cardamom 1
  8. Green cardamom 3-4
  9. Cinnamon 2 stick
  10. Allspices 4-5
  11. Whole white pepper 4-5
  12. Star anise 1
  13. Ghee 1 table spoon
  • Wash rice for few times and soak in water for 30 minutes. Drain all excess water.
  • Put all the spices on a piece of cheese cloth/soft cotton cloth. Tie a knotto make the "potli". Now boil enough water in your rice pan. Add oil and salt and the spice "potli". Add rice. Cook till 70% done.
  • Strain and spread over a large flat plate. Rub 1 table spoon ghee with very light hand.

Layring and "Dum"cooking:
  • Take a heavy-bottomed pan. Heat 2 table spoon ghee and half of the oil (left from cooked chicken). Spread it very well. Turn off the heat.
  • Take one portion of cooked rice and spread at the bottom of pan in a layer. Arrange half of cooked chicken, potato and egg on it. Spread little saffron milk. Sprinkle little biriyani masala and 1 table spoon birista.
  • Now add another layer of rice.
  • Repeat the chicken-potato-saffron milk layer. Add rest of "chicken oil" and little ghee. And finally add the rice layer. Top it with remaining saffron milk, ghee and biriyani masala.
  • Seal the pan-lid with flour-dough or cover it with aluminium foil and cover with a lid tightly.
  • Now turn on the heat. Keep the heat to lowest. I used double boiler method for "dum" cooking. Take a wide pan ( should big enough, so that you can put your biriyani pan in it.). Pour boiling water in it. Place your "Biriyani"-pan on it. Cook in this "Dum" process for 40 minutes to an hour. Turn off the heat. Give it 5-10 minutes standing time before you serve.

I served my "Biriyani" with some salad and "raita".
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  1. Request you to post a recipe on 'Chelo Kabab'

    1. Sure Antara... that's my favourite too...:)

  2. Hi Tanushree, I also love the potatoes more than anything in Biriyani, and nirlojjo vabe asked for extra pieces of it while in restros.

    1. hahahaha....good to know, there are few more like me ;)


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