Ramzan Special Lamb Biriyani Recipe By Chef Gaurav
Image Credit: This dish from the royal Mughal court today has seen many variations/ Pexels.com

A well-done biriyani is always a treasure to relish. With flavours of garam masala, meat and then slow cooked this dish is a delight. A perfect example of one pot meal, biriyani has seen many variations in India. Having come to India from Persia, biriyani was a special in the Mughal court. Being loaded with meat and all rich spices this dish was perfect to provide a balanced nutrition to the soldiers. 

Today Chef Gaurav of Fairmont Jaipur says “Our aim in this gastronomical journey at Fairmont Jaipur is to introduce the characteristic tastes and flavors of the vanished cooking techniques in this modern world, with the hope that the authentic dishes from different region and with different cooking techniques will be re-created in the kitchen to be savored at the table. With extensive culinary skills we are celebrating this auspicious month of Ramadan with some significant recipes of Mughal era Lamb Biryani is one of them. The mouth-watering delicacies from rich Mughal cuisine are heavily laced with history and were part of the usual food habits that were followed nearly five decades ago. We celebrate such recipes and hope to give you an insight into the glorious past of the majestic kitchen and travel back in time for a gastronomical experience”. 

Mutton lamb biriyani with basmati rice/ Freepix.com




    1 kg Leg of lamb, (boneless)                                            

    40gm Ghee                                                                       

    2 no 1/4 large onion, finely chopped                                  .

    50gm Garam masala                                                          

    50 gm Cumin seeds                                                            

    1 no Cinnamon stick                                                         .

    50gm Ginger finely chopped                                               

    50gm Garlic cloves large, crushed                                      

    50gm Ground turmeric                                                       

    50gm Chilli powder                                                            

    700ml Chicken stock                                                           

    30gm Coriander leaves                                                       

    500gm Basmati rice                                                            

    1gm Saffron threads                                                         

    150gm Natural yoghurt                                                         


    To begin, melt 30g of ghee in a large flameproof casserole dish over a medium-high heat. Add the lamb, season well and brown on all sides before transferring to a plate. Work in batches if necessary so you don’t overcrowd the pan

    Wipe out the casserole with kitchen paper and melt the remaining ghee over a medium heat. Add the chopped onion and fry, stirring frequently, for 5–8 minutes until soft and golden but not brown. Stir in the garam masala, cumin seeds and cinnamon stick and continue frying, stirring for 2–3 minutes until you can smell the aromas of the spices

    Return the lamb and all its juices to the casserole dish. Add the ginger, garlic, turmeric and chilli powder and stir around for 3 minutes, until aromatic

    Add the chicken stock and coriander and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to its lowest setting, cover the casserole dish and leave to simmer for 1 1/2 hours (the lamb should not be completely tender at this point.

    Meanwhile, prepare the rice, milk and garnish. Rinse the rice in several changes of cold water until the water is clear, then set the rice aside to soak for 20 minutes in plenty of water to cover

    Make the saffron milk by heating the milk until it simmers in a small saucepan. Crumble in the saffron and set aside to steep

    To make the dark onion garnish, put the sliced onion in a bowl, sprinkle with the salt and leave to stand for 5 minutes to extract the moisture. Use your hands to squeeze out any moisture

    Heat half the oil in a frying pan over a high heat. Add the onion and fry, stirring constantly, for 4–6 minutes until golden brown. Immediately tip out the pan as it will continue to darken as it cools (if you wait until the onion is dark brown before you remove from the pan, it will develop a burnt flavour. Set the onions to one side.

    Wipe out the frying pan with kitchen paper and heat the remaining oil in it. Add the sultanas and fry, stirring for 3–5 minutes until golden. Immediately remove them from the pan with a slotted spoon

    Add the almonds to the fat remaining in the pan and stir around for 2–3 minutes until golden brown, watching carefully because they can burn in seconds

    When the rice has finished soaking, drain it well. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil, add the rice and cook for 5 minutes (it will be completely tender at this point). Drain well and set aside

    Preheat the oven to 190°C/gas mark 5

    Take the lamb off the heat and stir in the yoghurt, a little at a time, stirring very quickly to prevent it curdling. Adjust the seasoning.

    Spoon the partially cooked rice over the lamb, mounding it up. Use the handle of a wooden spoon to make a hole in the centre of the rice, moving the spoon around until the hole is about 2.5cm wide

    Drizzle the saffron milk over the rice in ‘spokes’ coming from the centre

    Cover the dish, bake for 40 minutes then remove from the oven and leave to stand for 5 minutes without lifting the lid

    Uncover the dish and sprinkle the raisins and almonds over the top. Add the browned onions and sprinkle with fresh coriander

    Serve straight out of the dish, giving the biryani a nice stir to make sure all the elements are muddled together.