For Cooking Rice:
600 gms Basmati Rice
Salt- 1 tbsp
For Cooking Lamb/mutton:
Mutton / Lamb – 750gm with Bone
1 tsp Turmeric Powder
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
1 lemon grass(bruised)
Water to pressure cook the mutton
Special Garam Masala Powder :
Cinnamon Stick - 1 Piece
Nutmeg- ½ of a whole nutmeg
Coriander Seeds – 1 ½ tbsp
Star Anise - 1 large one
Cloves - 6
Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp
Note: It would be good if you can obtain mace, add about 2 pcs .Its difficult to get mace here therefore I usually substitute with nutmeg most of the time. I hunted for it around KLCC ,Isetan and Cold Storage but to no avail, as I cud not get it in Melaka. If using mace ,omit the nutmeg then.
Oil- 1/2 cup
Ghee - 3 tblspn
2 tbsps grounded almonds(about 12-15 almonds)
Onion -2 large sliced thinly
Ginger Garlic Paste - 3 tbsp ,2 in ginger and 5 nip’s garlic]
2 lemon grass(bruised)
Turmeric Powder - 1 tsp
Chilli Powder - 1 tbsp or according to preferences
Briyani powder – 2 tbsp
Cumin Powder - 1 tsp
Green Chillies – 2 ,sliced thinly.
Tomato- 1 large chopped finely
1 cup evaporated milk
1 large Washington potato
Salt to taste
Note: If using Washington potato ,since it tends to soften fast , add in when preparing the masala with the mutton.If using the curried potato,it takes time to soften ,therefore pressure cook it together with the mutton. As for the briyani powder, I get mine from the mill.I usually get all the dried powders from there as we fine it to our liking.You can get it the spices from any Indian store ,or a good mix can be bought from your nearby mill(If there is one).Remember,that a good flavour of a dish comes from a good blend of briyani mix.Usually ,when I buy any new spice powders, I have a tendency to taste them before using.In this way, we can add/adjust the spices to enrich the existing spice powders. As for the grounded almonds, it can be added with the masala as I am doing it , or you can sprinkle them as topping , on each layers at the final stage.
½ cup shallot crisp/bawang goreng
Sultanas / Kismis - 1/2 cup fried
½ cup fried cashew nuts
Coriander Leaves / Cilantro – ¾ cup finely chopped
Mint Leaves /Daun Pudina– ¾ cup finely chopped
Orange and yellow colouring powder or Saffron – 1 tsp colouring or 2 to 3 threads of saffron ,soaked in ¼ cup of milk for each colouring(Note: You need to warm the milk if using saffron so that it dissolves. If using colouring,there is no need to use warm milk).
Ghee - 2 tbsp,melted(Or use remaining ghee that you had used from frying fruit and nuts.
Screwpine leaves,knotted – 3
1 banana leaf ( cut into 3 parts)
Note: Saffron is rather expensive here, a few strands itself costs about Rm15, therefore you can replace it with bright orange colouring powder which is obtainable in the Indian grocer shop.
Prepare the garam masala powder. Dry roast all the ingredients given in the above list on a low flame until it gets toasted and a nice aroma comes from it. Let it cool before powdering in a mixer . Set aside.
Cook the Mutton. Place the cut mutton pieces in a pressure cooker. Add salt and turmeric powder to it.Mix in ginger-garlic paste and lemon grass. Cover it and cook for about 15 mins. The mutton is prepared in this manner so that there would not be raw smell later on.Switch off the flame and let the steam escape before opening. Check if the mutton is tender.If not, pressure cook for another 10 mins. If cooked, then transfer the cooked mutton in a bowl.
Soak the rice for 20 mins before cooking it. Partially cook the rice in a rice cooker as we will bake it later with mutton masala.
Make the toppings. Heat some oil in a pan. Fry some cashews and sultanas till it is golden. Set aside. Deep fry some onions till it is golden or you can use store bought readymade shallot crisp. Remove and set aside. Soak Saffron in warm milk and set aside. Chop your herbs and set aside.
Make the masala. Add ghee to the remaining oil in the skillet where the onions are fried. Add in the sliced onions and fry till light brown.
Add in ginger garlic paste and saute for a couple of mins.Then add in lemon grass.
Add in the spice powders and mix well.
Next, add in the green chilli and chopped tomato.
Cover and cook for 5 mins till the tomatoes turn mushy.Add in mutton and potatoes and combine them with the masala.Add in salt as well. In between mix in garam masala powder and milk.
Cook till the gravy thickens.Make sure there are some gravy and the dish is not too dry.
To assemble :
Remove half the masala to a bowl. Spread the rest of the masala evenly in a huge pot.
Try to prepare 3 layers ensuring that the top layer ends with rice.
Add cooked rice, mutton masala,chopped herbs, fried nuts, shallot crisp, coloured milk.
Again follow the same step.
As mentioned earlier,layer in such a manner that the top layer is rice.So that you have a good presentation.
Top/Drizzle with a few tbsp of ghee. Cover firmly with banana leaves .Make sure you discard the stem of the banana leaf before using them.
Preheat oven at 160C and bake for about 15 to 20mins.(Or you can use the rice cooker to cook it further)
Discard the leaves and fluff to ensure all the ingredients are well mixed. Cover with a new banana leaf.Serve with cucumber and pineapple salad, some papads etc. For those who prefer gravy, dalcha goes very well with this dish.
Note: Even though its common to serve briyani with raita , etc ,in Malaysia, its usually served with cucumber and pineapple salad, goes very well too .
To make things easier for you ,here are the steps you need to take:
1. First,pressure cook the mutton.
2.Second, cook the rice in the rice cooker.
3.Next,start preparing ingredients to do the masala.
4.Once the mutton is cooked and steam is out,start preparing the mutton masala.
5. In between when the mutton is simmering in spices, in a small wok,melt ghee and fry the nuts and raisins.
6. Close fire once mutton is ready.Personal preference to how thick you want your gravy.
7.Then start layering the rice,herbs ,mutton masala etc.
8.Preheat oven and bake.
9.Time consuming but worth it.
~*~Cucumber And Pineapple Salad~*~
½ a cucumber (halve and sliced thinly
6 to 7 rings of pineapple in syrup ( I prefer to use tinned pineapple as they are sweet)-sliced thinly
2 shallots –chopped
1 green chilli –deseed and chopped
1 tomato (discard the middle part and chopped)
A handful of chopped coriander leaves
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tsp or more sugar
Salt to taste
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl.The salad is more in a sweeter side. You can replace with equal sweetener !
Keep refrigerated until serving time.
The salad compliments the mutton briyani .