The quintessential Awadhi Biriyani recipe from the Lucknowi Food Festival at Poppy’s Hotel
Chef S Raja says that there is something comforting about the rich and royal flavours of Awadhi cuisine. Enamoured by its use of spices, the chef is passionate about sharing the warmth that these flavours bring at the Lucknowi Food Festival at Poppy’s Hotel. “The beauty of this cuisine lies in the mixture of spices as well as the meticulous preparation technique.” While putting on offer a range of dishes like Awadhi Murgh Korma, Mahi Razeela, Lagan ka Murgh and Bong Zafrani Nehari, the executive chef shares his recipe for a must-have at any Lucknowi Food Festival — The Awadh Ghosht Biriyani.
Leg of Lamb diced on the bone - 2 kg | Basmati Rice - 1 kg | Onions - 8 | Ginger and garlic paste -1 cup | Cloves -14 | Star anise - 4 | Green cardamom -12 | Mace - 4 | Cinnamon sticks (one inch each) - 2 | Bay leaves - 6 | Peppercorn -12 | Kashmiri red chillies - 6 | Cumin - 1 1/2 tbsp | Red chilli -1 1/2 tbsp | Garam masala - 1 1/2 tbsp | Nutmeg - 1/2 tbsp | Saffron - 1 tsp | Rosewater - 100 ml | Kewra water - 100 ml | Milk - 1 cup | Ghee - 1 cup | Oil - 1/2 cup | Lemon Juice - 1 tbsp | Salt to taste
Preparing the stock
• Add 5 litres of water in a cooking pot. To it add 2 1/2 tbsp of salt, 1 cup of Ghee, 1 cup of ginger-garlic paste and half a cup of oil. Add all the whole spices, leaving 6 cloves, 4 green cardamom and saffron aside.
• Add the powdered spices, keeping aside half tbsp each of cumin powder, red chilli powder and the garam masala. • Add 50 ml of rose water and 50 ml of kewra water. Bring it to a boil.
• Once the broth comes to a boil add the lamb pieces. Cover and cook for approximately 1.5 hrs on medium heat until the meat is tender.
• While the stock is cooking, finely slice the onions and deep fry until golden brown. Remove from the
• Wash and soak rice for at least an hour.
• Once the lamb is cooked strain the stock and discard the spices.
• In a heavy bottom pot add 1 tbsp of ghee and lamb pieces. Sauté for a couple of minutes and add the fried onions, 3/4th of the stock, 1 cup of milk, 1/2 tbsp of cumin powder, 1/2 tbsp of chilli powder and half tbsp of the garam masala powder. Cook for 10-15 mins stirring continuously on high heat until the liquid comes to a light syrup consistency.
• In another pot bring water to boil and add the remaining whole spices and 1 tbsp of lemon juice and the remainder of the stock. Once the water comes to a boil, add the rice.
• Once 3/4th done, create alternating layers of mutton broth and rice and then sprinkle milk and saffron mixture on the rice and seal the pot with aluminium foil.
• Slow cook for 45 mins.
• Serve hot with raita.
Lucknowi Food Festival on until September 23. At Poppy’s Hotel.