Vegetable Biryani

We all love biryani, this is my mum’s recipe which always turns out perfect. I have always been lauded  whenever I made this for either dinner parties or pot lucks. It is not just healthy with a lot of vegetables but delicious as well. There is a simple vegetarian curry, full of fresh Indian flavours which is quick to make. Layered spicy vegetables, basmati rice, fried onions and cashew nuts are just the ticket in this traditional vegetarian Indian dish. Here is a simple and yummy biryani recipe that can be prepared at home in no time. We had this with raita and it tasted awesome.

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Ingredients

Serves 6

For The Rice

  • 2 cups basmati rice soaked and drained
  • salt to taste
  •  2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • few strands of saffron soaked in warm milk
  • 2 tbsp rose water

For The Vegetable Gravy

  • 2 tsp khus khus (poppy seeds)
  • 2 tsp desiccated coconut (dry)
  • 2 onions
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic
  • 1 inch piece of ginger
  • 1/2 a can of peeled tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 tsp kashmiri red chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 2-3 tbsp cream
  • 3 cups mixed vegetables (carrots, peas, corn, beans, cauliflower and capsicum)
  • salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp oil

For Garnish

  • 1/2 cup fried onion
  • 10-15 fried cashew nuts
  • mint leaves

Directions

For The Rice

  1. Combine 4½ cups of water, lemon juice sugar, rice and salt in a deep non-stick pan, cover with a lid and cook on a medium flame for 10 to 12 minutes or till the rice is cooked.
  2. Strain the rice using a strainer.
  3. Divide the rice in 2 portions.
  4. Add saffron mixed with warm milk to 1 portion and rose water to the other portion. Keep aside.

For The Vegetable Gravy

  1. Dry roast the khus khus and coconut separately for 2 mins.
  2. Grind  onions, ginger, garlic, khus khus and coconut together.
  3. Heat the oil in a deep non-stick pan.
  4. Add the paste, and sauté on a medium flame for a 2 mins.
  5. Add chilli powder, turmeric, coriander powder and cumin powder and saute again for a minute.
  6. Add the tomatoes and salt, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 4 to 5 minutes.
  7. Add cream cook for a minute and then add mixed vegetables, cover and cook for 5-7 mins till vegetables are cooked.

How To Proceed

  1. Transfer the rice mixed with rose water in a bowl and spread it evenly with the back of a spoon.
  2. Add all the prepared vegetable gravy on it and spread it evenly.
  3. Top it with the remaining rice mixed with saffron and spread it evenly.
  4. Pour the ghee evenly over it and cover it with a lid.
  5. Microwave it for 2-3 minutes

Garnish

  1. Just before serving, garnish with fried onions, fried cashew nuts and mint leaves and serve hot.

Tip

Before frying onion season it with salt

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