- Mutton (1/2 kg)
- Thick curd (1 cup)
- Ginger–garlic paste (2 tbsp)
- Green chilli paste (1 tbsp)
- Yogurt (fresh and thick) (1 cup)
- Biryani masala (3 tbsp)
- Raw papaya paste (1 tbsp)
- Cashew paste (1/2 cup)
- Lemon (1/2)
- Onions (cut into fine thin slices and deep fried till crisp) (500 gm)
For aromatic rice
- Basmati Rice (2 cups)
- Green cardamoms (elaichi) (6)
- Cloves (laung) (6-7)
- Cinnamon stick (dalchini) (1 inch)
- Peppercorns (6-7)
- Mace flower (javitri/ jayphal) (1)
- Star anise (chakra phool) (2)
- Oil (3/4 cup)
- Saffron (kesar) (1 large pinch soaked in 1/2 cup milk)
- Mint (pudina) (a small bunch)
- Coriander leaves (chopped) (1/2 cup)
- Clarified butter (ghee) (2 tbsp)
- Salt as per taste
- First, marinate mutton pieces with thick curd, ginger–garlic paste, green chilli paste, handful of fried onion, squeeze half of the lemon juice, salt, biryani masala.
- Technique in focus #1: Add papaya paste to the mix for succulent mutton.
- Marinate for at least 2 hrs.
- Heat Oil in a pressure cooker. Add the marinated mutton and a bowlful of cashew paste. Cook for 3–4 whistles, set aside.
- Wash, rinse & drain Rice and soak it in water for 15–20 mins. This will help the rice remain non-sticky.
- Technique in focus #2: Add all the whole spices to a muslin cloth and tie a potli.
- Heat 1 tbsp ghee in a pan, add boiling water and immerse the spice potli. Then add soaked rice, and salt.
- Squeeze half a lemon when the rice has started to cook for non-sticky rice.
- Parboil the rice and cook till it’s 3/4th done.
- In a copper handi, add 1 tbsp ghee.
- Technique in focus #3: Layer the base of the handi with sliced potatoes. So that the biryani does not stick to the bottom.
- Sprinkle biryani masala followed by a heaped layer of rice. Garnish with chopped mint and coriander and then top with a layer of cooked mutton. Now add fried onion and then repeat the layers.
- Pour in the saffron milk, seal the edges with dough and cover the handi with a heavy plate.
- Cook for 20–30 mins.
- Your shahi, aromatic biryani is ready to be served along with a raita of your choice!