Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Slow-Cooker Hyderabadi Chicken Biryani

These days I am completely experimenting slow cooker recipes and as  promised earlier, I did try the Indian biryani recipe in slow cooker! And the biryani was super scrumptious moreover, it was really simple to make because of slow cooking, the flavors were really aromatic and delicious.

Slow Cooker Recipe

If you don’t know about biryani then it is a Muglai rice dish and it’s famous in Hyderabad which is situated in India. I got this recipe when I was in India quite a long back from an Indian lady, although I made this recipe earlier too as instructed by my friend. But recently one of my Indian male friend told me a very interesting fact about Muglai food that it is cooked in low temperature and cooked for a longer period of time. So that, flavors and aroma are maintained. He said it’s definitely not like our fast foods which can be cooked in just few minutes in fact authentic Muglai recipes are cooked at very low temperature and cooked for about 8-10 hours. From here, I thought of trying this recipe in slow cooker as we know that at low settings we can cook any recipe specially meat or chicken recipe for about 8-10 hours. So could be ideal temperature for cooking biryani too.

Anyways if you are making any authentic recipe, I would suggest get spices and ingredients authentic too. You can get the Indian spices and ingredients easily in the local Indian market. One of the major ingredient is Indian ghee (you can get this easily too in the Indian market).
Anyways let’s start cooking this amazing recipe –

This recipe can serve up to 6 servings
Preparation Time: 6 hours to overnight for marinating
Cooking Time: 4-5 hours at low settings

Ingredients – 

1. For marinating
  • 1 ½ lbs. Chicken (you can use chicken breasts, drumsticks)
  • ¼ cup yogurt
  • 2 medium sized onions or 1 large onion
  • 1 tbsp. ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 green chili
  • ½ cup mint
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro
  • ¼ tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 ½ tsp. red chili powder
  • 2 tsp. coriander powder
  • 1 tsp. pepper powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp. ghee
  • 2 tbsp. oil
  • 3 cloves
  • 1 star anise
  • 2 green cardamom
  • 1 tbsp. fennel seeds
  • ½ tsp. cumin seeds

2. To Prepare Garnish:
  • ¾ cup thin sliced onions
  • ¼ cup cashew
  •  2 tsp. raisins (this will give little a sweeter taste)
  • 1 tbsp. ghee
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 4 saffron strands soaked in warm milk or water (if you don’t have you can use orange food color)

3. For Rice:

  • 3 cup basmati rice - soaked in water for 30 minutes
  • 2 tbsp. mint leaves
  • 1 tbsp. chopped cilantro
  • 1 tsp. cardamom seeds powder
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 mace
  • 1 tbsp. fennel seeds
  • 2-3 cloves
  • ½ tsp. cumin seeds
  • 2 tbsp. oil
  • Salt to taste
Method –

To marinate chicken
  1. Coarsely grind onions, ginger garlic and green chilies in a food processor and keep aside. Powder the spices and masala powders finely. *if you don’t have these spices you can use curry powder, but I will suggest to keep the authenticity use these spices*
  2. Now heat some oil in a skillet pan. And sauté the coarsely ground onion paste over the medium heat until it’s brown or done. Reduce heat to minimum and add those ground spices. Sauté it for a minute. Put chopped cilantro and mint leaves and turn of the heat. Let it cool for a while add yogurt, salt and mix well, marinate the chicken pieces in this mixture (ensure the pieces are coated well in this mixture). Cover it with plastic wrap and set aside for at least 2 hours or overnight in refrigerator. 

For Garnish

Heat ghee in a large pan and fry the raisins till they are plump. Remove it and keep aside. Next, fry the cashews till golden and keep aside. In the same ghee, add sliced onions and fry till brown. Remove with slotted spoon and keep aside.

For Rice
  • Soak rice in some water at room temperature for 15 minutes. Drain out the water.
  • Heat oil in a large pan. Add the spices (expect the mint and cilantro leaves) in the order they are listed and let them crack. Lower heat to minimum and add coriander and mint leaves.
  • Pour in boiling water, bring it back to boil and cook uncovered for about 5 minutes till the rice is about 1/3rd cooked. Remove from heat and drain out hot water quickly.

Arrangement – 

  • Now, turn the slow cooker on low settings. Add onions, 2 tablespoons of the oil and the marinated chicken to the slow cooker. Cook for 3-4 hours at low settings.
  • Once the chicken is cooked, put the half-cooked rice on the top of chicken. Add saffron mixture or food color, tablespoon of ghee and freshly chopped cilantro and mint leaves and let it cook for 1 hour more, fluffing the rice once or twice and bringing the sauce from the bottom to the top.
  • Serve this with mint and yogurt dip.

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