Challenge 5: Meat Breyani

For this challenge, I decided to bring something traditional. I wanted my friends to experience something truly cultural. It is a meat breyani/biryani. I did not find many good recipes online, so I used one that my mom has made before. I have to warn that if you are willing to make this recipe, it takes a lot of time!


4 cups rice

2 pieces stick cinnamon

3 cardamom seeds

3 cloves

3  allspice

3 onions

2 extra onions, finely chopped

Oil for frying chopped onions

1.5kg meat or chicken

30ml garlic and ginger

15ml cumin

10ml turmeric

15ml coriander

10ml fennel/barishap

10ml chili powder

250ml plain yogurt

1 large tomato grated

3 green chilies

Salt to taste

½ bunch finely chopped coriander

½ tsp saffron strands, soaked in water

125ml cooked lentils

125ml melted butter

14 small potatoes, fried in oil


For the rice: Boil together 4 cups white rice, 2 stick cinnamon, 3 cloves, 3 allspice, 3 cardamom pods, 60ml oil, 20ml salt until the rice is cooked in about 2 litres of water.

The rice must not be soft. Drain and use when required. Set aside.

For the meat: Marinade meat, overnight or at least 2 hrs before in all the spices, including green chillies, yogurt and tomato.

Fry 3 onions until crispy and brown and keep aside. Sauté the 2 chopped onions separately until golden. Add meat and cook until soft. Add salt to taste.

Add chopped coriander just when meat is soft. The meat should be moist, but not too saucy. Meanwhile, deep fry the potatoes.

Layering of the breyani: Using a dish, place a layer of rice at the bottom, then a later of meat and then a layer of potatoes. Sprinkle with lentils and fried onions. Continue layering until all meat and rice has been used, ending with a layer of rice, onions and lentils.

Finally, add crispy onions and coriander and sprinkle with saffron water and melted butter.

Cover dish tightly with foil. Place the dish in an oven preheated at 180 degrees C until dish is heated through and aromatic. Potatoes should be soft.

NB: take care to drain all oil from onions and potatoes. Do not use oil for breyani.

I love breyani with a side sauce, called dhai. Here is the recipe, thanks to my cousin:


500ml plain yogurt

Finely chopped coriander

1tsp dried chilies (depending on your taste)

1/2 to 1tsp cumin

5ml crushed garlic

salt and lemon juice to taste

Mix all together well, or liquidise



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