Chicken Biryani, برياني دجاج Servings: 4

Chicken Biryani


  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken pieces
  • 2 cups rice
  • 1 large potato, diced (optional)
  • 1 cup yoghurt
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 tsp. garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. ginger, minced
  • 5 green cardamom pods
  • 1 black cardamom
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 7 whole black pepper corns, adjust to taste
  • Cinnamon stick, 1" piece
  • 1 tsp. black cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp. ground cardamom (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp. chilli powder, adjust to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp. saffron soaked in 1 tbsp. hot water
  • Green chili, to taste
  • 1 tbsp. cashews
  • 1 tbsp. raisins
  • 3 tbsp. oil
  • boiled eggs (optional)


  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine chicken pieces,  ginger, garlic, whole green chili, ground cardamom, ground cumin, coriander powder, chili powder, turmeric,  fresh mint and half the cilantro, salt and yoghurt.

  2. Rinse and soak the rice for 30 minutes.

  3. In a large saucepan, boil 4 cups water. Add a little oil, 3 green cardamoms and 1 bay leaf.

  4. Add rice to the boiling water and bring to another boil. Cook for about 5 minutes until 3/4 done.

  5. Drain rice and set aside.

  6. Heat oil in a saucepan, fry the cashews and raisins, remove and set aside.

  7. Fry the onions until brown and crispy. Remove from oil and set aside.

  8. Add the whole spices (black and green cardamoms, cinnamon stick, clove, black pepper corns, black cumin seeds) to the hot oil and stir until fragrant.

  9. Add the chicken mixture and half the fried onions to the hot oil and whole spices and cook for 15 - 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  10. Layer  the chicken in the bottom of an oven proof dish, top with half the potatoes and half the rice, then add the remaining potoatoes and the gravy.  Top with the remaining rice.

  11. Top with the saffron water.   Cover tightly with foil and cook in a 250F preheated oven for a further 30 minutes.

  12. When done, lightly mix the biryani and garnish with the remaining fried onions, cashews, raisins and fresh cilantro leaves. 

  13. serve hot.