Sunday, 26 October 2014

Mutton Dum Biryani

Mom's version of dum biryani with layers of cooked mutton gravy topped with fried onions, fresh herbs and then layered with basmati rice over it with a drizzle of saffron. Mom always covers the pot with dough and then put it on tawa/ iron skillet for dum. However , my way of dum is slightly different. I have a glass stove top and I can not use stove top for dum since the glass might break due to high heat. Altenatively I cover the pot with aluminium foil and put in the oven at low temperature for the steam to develop in.




To Marinate

  • 500 Grams of mutton
  • 1 Tablespoon Ginger Garlic Paste
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Red Chilli powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Garam Masala
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Turmeric powder

For the fried Onions

  • 3 Large onions sliced thinly
  • 1/2 Cup Vegetable oil to fry onions

For the Biryani 

  • 2 Cups Basmati Rice
  • 3 Tablespoons of Oil
  • 2 Bayleaves
  • 4 Cloves
  • 1 inch Cinnamon piece
  • 2 Green cardamom
  • 2 Black Cardamom
  • 1 Star anise
  • 1/2 Teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 6 Garlic cloves chopped finely
  • 1 inch Ginger piece chopped finely
  • 2 Large onions sliced thinly
  • 2 Large tomatoes chopped finely
  • 2 Tablespoons natural plain yogurt / curd
  • 1 Tablespoon Coriander Powder
  • 2 Teaspoon Red chilli powder
  • 1/2 Cup mint leaves
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons of chopped cilantro leaves
  • 2 Tablespoon ghee
  • 10 strands of saffron
  • 1 Tablespoon warm milk to soak saffron 


1. Marinate mutton pieces for 1 hour along with the list of ingredients mentioned under 'to marinate'
2. In a wok / kadai heat oil for frying onion. When the oil is hot, reduce the flame to medium and add about 1/4 cup of thinly sliced onions and fry until the onions are crispy and golden.  Remove fried onions from oil and drain on a paper towel. Repeat the process and fry rest of the sliced onions in small batches
3. Cook basmati rice : Wash basmati rice in tap water for several times and soak in water for 15 to 20 minutes. Drain and remove water from the rice and set aside.  In a large pot, bring 5 cups of water to boil. Add 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil. When the water starts to rolling boil, add rice and let it cook for 10 to 12 minutes or until it is  
4. Soak saffron in warm milk for 15 minutes until the milk changes color to yellow

Direction for making Biryani Masala/ gravy 

1.  In a pan heat 3 Tablespoons of vegetable oil. When the oil is hot, add bay leaves, cloves, star anise, black cardamom, cinnamon, green cardamom, black peppercorns. Fry for few seconds
2. Add chopped garlic and ginger and fry until the garlic is light golden
3. Add sliced onions and 1/2 teaspoon of salt and sauté until the onions are translucent
4. Add tomatoes and sauté until the tomatoes are mushy and oil starts separating from the mixture
5. Add coriander powder, red chilli powder along with 2 tablespoon of water and fry on low flame until the water evaporates and oil starts leaving from the mixture
6. Add 2 tablespoons of yogurt and mix it together with the masala
7. Add the marinated mutton pieces and sauté on high flame for 5 to 7 minutes
8. Add 1 cup water, season with salt and let the mutton cook for 20 minutes.  Add more water if required to cook mutton
9. Once the mutton pieces are cooked through and the water evaporates completely. Switch off the flame. Biryani masala is ready. Time to assemble / layer biryani and put it on dum

How to layer biryani 

1. In a non-stick pan ( oven safe) add 1 tablespoon oil and grease the bottom of the pan and sides
2. Add 1/2 cup of the biryani masala we prepared as a bottom most layer in the pan
3. Then add 1/3 portion of the cooked basmati rice on top of the biryani masala
4. Add 1/3 portion of the fried onions on top of the rice
5. Add 1/3 portion of the chopped mint leaves, cilantro leaves, 1/2 teaspoon ghee

6. Now add second layer of biryani masala/ gravy with mutton pieces followed by rice and the followed by a layer of fried onions, mint leaves, cilantro leaves and ghee

7. Once you are done with layering rice and biryani masala sprinkle the saffron soaked milk

8. Cover the pan with aluminium foil on the top

9. Cover with a tight lid

10. Preheat oven to 180 C and keep the biryani pot in the oven and cook for 5 minutes

11. Then reduce the temperature to 150 C and cook the biryani for 20 to 30 minutes until the rice is cooked through and the masala gets blended with rice

12. Once out of the oven, let the pot remain at room temperature for 5 minutes and then open the pan. Be cautious of hot steam from the pan. Use gloves and remove the aluminium foil. Give the rice a nice stir / mix well

13. How to dum biryani on stove top : Place a iron skillet / tawa on the stove and preheat the tawa. Once the tawa is hot, place the biryani pan and let the get heated and let the steam develop inside the pan. Rice and biryani masala will get cooked in the steam and it will get blended together. Let the pan remain on the tawa for 20 to 30 minutes

13. Serve hot with onion raita and baingan ka katta

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