Mutton Biryani Recipe

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So, is it biryani or biriyani?

Everyone is familiar with this world-famous rice dish that’s has its roots in India.  In a nutshell, Mutton Biryani is, big chunks of meat (any kind you prefer) is marinated with an array of spices and yogurt, and then cooked together with long grain basmati rice, fried onions, cilantro and mint leaves.

There are two ways you can cook the Mutton Biryani. You can keep the meat raw. In the raw method, the raw marinated meat is layered with half-cooked rice and the meat goes on the bottom of the pot. This method makes the biryani extremely flavorful because the meat absorbs all the flavors from spices and cooks in its own juice.

The other method is, you cook the rice and meat separately and then layer them and cook some more. This method is not only the easy method but also a no-fail method. You will hardly go wrong with this method. I call it my easy peasy method.

My family loves biryani for a weekend dinner and I usually make Chicken Biryani or Shrimp Biryani or Mutton Biryani depending upon our mood. But I make biryani at least couple times a month.

While making Mutton Biryani, you might get scared about the long list of ingredients. But then isn’t that the case with almost all Indian dishes? But do not worry about the long list of ingredients. The list of ingredients will stop to intimidate you, once you know the method. A piece of advice though…, I won’t mess with the recipe or ingredients unless I tried it a couple of time. I have been using a 15 year old recipe that was taught to me by my sister who was visiting me from India. I still use that recipe and yes, I do modify it here or there, but I never mess with the original one.

To get that authentic Mutton Biryani done, you need is a heavy skillet with a tight lid if you will cook on stove top and if you are going to use your oven, then you need a deep oven proof pot. The second thing you would need is patience, because, mutton biryani needs to be cooked in low heat for a significant amount of time.

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Now let’s go over some basics. These are the few very important basic ingredients of a traditional dum biryani

The choice of meat – You can use either chicken, mutton, lamb or sea food like fish and shrimp.  You can keep the meat bone less or with bones. I prefer bone in my meat.

Marinade –  It’s very important to marinate the meat for at least 4 to 5 hours. Preferably, overnight.  The marinate must contain yogurt and an array of aromatic spices. For sea food, you don’t need to marinate for such a long time. Just a couple of hours is enough.

Spices – Use fresh aromatic spices. Grind your spices using a coffee grinder or any other way you prefer fresh.

Ghee or oil – If you can cook in ghee it will produce a more authentic taste.

Fried onion – Fried onion, cilantro and mint are for biryani. Slice the onion paper-thin. Coat them with some corn flour and fry them in vegetable oil over low to medium heat until golden brown.

Rice – there is no argument here. You must use the long grain basmati rice. Never compromised basmati rice with other substitutes. Basmati rice is the long grain rice suitable to prepare biryani. Since it is less sticky than other types of rice, every grain of rice is well-defined and separated from each other.

Saffron – Saffron is an expensive herb, which renders fragrance to the biryani. You can do without it if you do not have saffron. In 1/2 cup of warm milk crush a pinch of saffron strands and put some whole strands. Wait till it turns yellow. Pour onto the rice before cover the pot with the lid.

Dum Biryani, Authentic Hyderabadi Biryani, Ghost Biryani, Mutton Biryani, Lamb Biryani, Nawab Cuisine, Indian Cuisine, Pulao, Pilaf, Saffron, KesarHow to cook the Biryani Rice?

Soak the basmati rice in water for 45 minutes before boiling it. After that, put the soaked rice in a large pot of boiling water, with the amount of water at least three times the volume of the rice. Add some salt, some cloves, cinnamon, cardamom and bay leaf into the water to flavor the rice. You need to cook the rice until only half done, which takes about 5 to 7 minutes.

How to cook Biryani – The no Oven method

After you layer up your rice and meat, seal up the edge of the lid with a piece of kitchen towel. The whole purpose is to let the steam inside the skillet to cook the chicken, which is the best way to keep the steam in the pot.  Cook in very low heat.

Place the pot on a flat griddle or tawa

The heat from the stove will be further away from the pot and is partially insulated by the tawa. This method is useful if the is still too high even you have adjusted it to the minimum. Let the steam to cook the rice and the meat. Cooking with steam in an enclosed utensil produce the best biryani rice.

Cook the chicken biryani over very low heat for about 40 minutes. After 40 minutes, switch off the stove and let it stands for another 10 minutes before serving.

How to cook Biryani – The Oven method

Layer up your meat and rice in a large deep oven proof pot and cook on 275 degree F for an hour. Make sure that, the pot is tightly shut.Dum Biryani, Authentic Hyderabadi Biryani, Ghost Biryani, Mutton Biryani, Lamb Biryani, Nawab Cuisine, Indian Cuisine, Pulao, Pilaf, Saffron, KesarINGREDIENTS:

Ingredients to marinate the Mutton/Lamb

  • Ghee to cook mutton
  • 4 Small onions chopped
  • 2-pound/1 kg mutton or lamb
  • 4 cloves chopped garlic
  • 1 TSP of chopped ginger
  • 1 TBSP ground coriander
  • 1 TBSP ground cumin
  • 3 TBSP chili powder
  • 2 TBSP ground turmeric
  • 10 green cardamom pods
  • 6 pieces cloves
  • 2 pieces bay leaves
  • 1 TSP ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • Salt per taste
  • 1 small bunch of cilantro or coriander leaves chopped
  • 1 small bunch of mint leaves chopped

Ingredients to cook rice

  • 5 cups basmati rice
  • 12 cups boiling water
  • salt

Garnish

  • fried onion, chopped cilantro leaves, mint leaves, rose-water, saffron soaked in 1.4 cup milk

METHOD:

Marinate the meat

  • Cut the onion into thin slices. Deep fried in oil over low to medium heat until the onion is caramelized and turn golden brown.
  • Mix half of the fried onion, cilantro and mint leaves with the rest of the ingredients for marination.
  • Keep the marinated meat in the refrigerator overnight.

Cook the rice

  • Soak the basmati rice in water for 45 minutes. Drained.
  • Bring the water to a boil. Add some salt.
  • Add the basmati rice.
  • Cook over medium to high heat for 5/7 minutes. Keep stirring.
  • Remove the rice when the rice grain can be broken into 2-3 parts

Cook – No Oven 

  • Place the marinated meat in a heavy bottom pot.
  • Spread half of the rice on it.
  • Spread half of the remaining fried onions, cilantro and mint leaves on the rice.
  • Layer the remaining rice on the fried onion, cilantro, and mint leaves.
  • Add some ghee.
  • Close the lid and seal with some dough. (Use kitchen towel to seal if dough not available)
  • Cook over low heat for 20 minutes.
  • Place a saucepan under the pot and cook the rice over very low heat for another 30 minutes.
  • Open the lid.
  • Remove the chapati dough
  • Garnish with more coriander, mint leaves, fried onions

Cook – Oven

  • Pre heat the oven to 300-degree F
  • Place the marinated meat in a heavy bottom pot.
  • Spread half of the rice on it.
  • Spread half of the remaining fried onions, cilantro and mint leaves on the rice.
  • Layer the remaining rice on the fried onion, cilantro, and mint leaves.
  • Add some ghee and rose-water
  • Cook for an hour and half
  • Garnish with more coriander, mint leaves, fried onions

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17 thoughts on “Mutton Biryani Recipe

  1. Oooo I love Biryani. It’s one of my favorite dishes when we go out for Indian. I’d love to be able to make it at home. Saving this recipe for later.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Aish,
    Thanks for sharing. I tried this last weekend but used portobello mushrooms instead of lamb. My hubby eyes were gleaming…. He was so excited that I finally made him some biryani. Thanks Aish for helping me to keep my hubby belly happy. 😘

    Like

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