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Boneless chicken biryani

Good old home made biryani that will satiate your cravings!

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For the rice
For the boneless chicken curry
  • 1.75 cup basmati rice
  • 4 cups hot water
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 4 cardamom
  • 6 cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 inch cinnamon stick
  • 4 tbsp sunflower/vegetable oil
  • 5 medium onions, peeled and sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and minced into a paste
  • 1.5 inch ginger, peeled and minced into a paste
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 0.5 tsp chilli powder (or as desired)
  • 1 tsp kashmiri chilli powder (or as desired)
  • 5 soft tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 3 boneless chicken breasts, cut into large cubes
  • 5 tbsp plain yoghurt
  • 1 cup hot water (add less, more or as needed)
  • 1 handful freshly chopped coriander
  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 medium onions, peeled and very thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 0.5 cup warm milk
  • 1 pinch saffron thread
  • 0.5 tsp rose water
  • 1 handful freshly chopped mint
  • 1 handful freshly chopped coriander
For the topping
  • Cooking Time
    35 mins
  • Serving
    Serves 8
  • Skill Level


I have been craving some good old home made biryani for so long! I wanted to make something easy, yet super delicious. Who doesn't love some good old biryani??? It is my absolute favourite!!

I have made mutton biryani before: http://www.nosaibasfood.com/2013/07/mutton-biryani.html

As well as chicken biryani: http://www.nosaibasfood.com/2013/08/chicken-biryani.html

Today it is boneless chicken biryani, made simply by putting together a curry and cooking rice 3/4 of the way, then layering it up. Here it goes...

  1. Begin by rinsing the rice under running water. Once the water is clear, soak it in water and set aside
  2. Add the oil into a pot over high heat, once hot add the onions and cook, mixing regularly, until lightly golden (will take around 5-10 mins)
  3. Add the garlic and ginger paste, and cook for a further few minutes over high heat, mixing  well
  4. Add the salt, ground coriander, ground cumin, garam masala, turmeric powder, chilli powder and kashmiri chilli powder. Mix well and cook over high heat for a further few minutes
  5. Add the tomatoes and tomato puree, mix well, and cook for 5-10 mins or until the tomatoes soften and you see the oil coming to the top of the mixture. If you feel the mixture is too thick, feel free to add hot water to avoid is sticking and burning
  6. Add the chicken, and mix to coat it well. Cook for 10 mins over high heat turning the chicken over regularly
  7. Add the yoghurt to a bowl, remove some of the gravy and add it to the yoghurt. Give it a good mix, then slowly add it back into the pot, mixing as you add the yoghurt. Cook over high heat for a further 5 mins
  8. Add the hot water to loosen the curry (if needed), and bring to the boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and allow to cook for around 10 more mins
  9. In a separate pan, prepare the fried onion topping. Heat up the vegetable oil in the pan over high heat, once its hot, add your onions. Once they have become golden in colour, add the brown sugar to caramelise them further. Once they have become well browned, remove them onto a plate and set aside (depending on the size of your pan, you may need to cook your onions in batches to ensure they caramelise well)
  10. In the meantime, drain the rice, and in a large pot add the hot water. Add the salt, cardamom, cloves, bay leaves and cinnamon stick. Bring to the boil for a few minutes (whilst the water takes in all the flavour). Add the drained rice, mix well and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, cover the pot, and cook for 3 mins (the rice should be 3/4 cooked). Drain, remove any large pieces of cinnamon, cardamom, bay leaves and cloves then set aside
  11. Prepare the topping by adding saffron to the warm milk, as well as the rose water. Cover it and set aside
  12. Check if the chicken curry is done, and also taste and adjust seasoning (you may need to add a sprinkle of salt according to taste). Add the freshly chopped coriander, cover and cook for a further few mins
  13. In the same pot you cooked your rice, start assembling the biryani by adding a thin layer  of rice followed by half the chicken mixture. Then add half the rice, followed by half the saffron milk. Repeat with the other half of all the ingredients. Top with the chopped mint, coriander and caramelised onions, cover with foil then a tight lid and leave to cook on low heat for 35 mins. Turn off the heat and leave covered for a further 10 mins before serving

Ahhh...I just can't tell you how delicious this was! MashAllah...it is worth every minute of your time. The end result is something you can just dig into and enjoy every mouthful! Give it a try, trust me, you won't regret! Enjoy :)


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