The fanfare for biryani in the country is widespread. The juicy and succulent pieces of meat dunked in a pot of long-grained rice leaves one with an aromatic and tantalising dish. Given the immense love for this one-pot dish, each region has their style of biryani. In fact, biryani was popular in the Mughal era too. The dish was prepared in the royal kitchens which gave way to the Moradabadi biryani of today. Defined by the city from where it originates, Moradabadi biryani traces its way to the city of Moradabad in Uttar Pradesh. 

Also Read: Have You Tried This Unique Matka Biryani?

The specialty of Moradabadi biryani lies in its cooking technique. From north to south, east and west, several kinds of biryani are made across the country and the uniqueness is their method of cooking. The Moradabadi biryani, for instance, is a kachhi-style biryani. For the unversed, biryani is cooked in largely two ways i.e. kaccha or pakka technique. The former refers to raw or uncooked biryani and follows a slightly different process. Instead of cooking the meat separately and then adding it to the rice, like is the case with Hyderabadi chicken biryani, the kacchi-style biryani cooks the meat and rice together in one pot. 

This allows the flavour of the meat to be infused with the rice and spices perfectly well, in turn giving us a delicious blend of tastes, like the Moradabadi biryani. Another upside of this biryani is that the long-grained rice doesn’t leave even an ounce of oil on your taste buds unlike the greasy Hyderabadi counterpart.

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Ingredients: 

    650 gms chicken 

    2 tbsp ginger garlic paste 

    150 gms curd 

    1 tbsp green chilli paste  

    Salt 

    1 tbsp lemon juice  

    Garam masalas:  

    1 mace  

    1 star Anise  

    2 bay leaves  

    1 nutmeg  

    10 peppercorns  

    5 cloves 

    4 cardamoms 

    1 tsp cumin  

    1 inch cinnamon  

    2 tsp Fennel powder 

    14 cups Oil  

    2 large sliced onions 

    4 slit green chilli 

    2 cups basmati rice  

    3.5 cups water  

    Salt 

    1 tbsp ghee 

    1 tsp kewra water  

    1 tsp Food colour (optional) 

    Fried onions to garnish

Method: 

1.    Marinate chicken for an hour with ingredients mentioned above (for marination).  

2.    Wash and soak rice for 30 mins.  

3.    Heat kadhai, add oil and once hot, fry onions till golden brown. Remove some for garnish. 

4.    Add slit green chillies and marinated chicken and mix well. Once it comes to a boil, reduce the heat and cover and cook till the chicken is cooked. 

5.    Add water, salt and the soaked rice, mix gently and once it comes to a boil, reduce the heat and cook for 5-7 mins till well-cooked. 

6.    Add ghee, kewra water, food colour (optional) and fried onions as garnish. 

7.    Cover and seal the kadhai well and cook on the dum for another 5-7 mins on low heat.