3/4th cups black channa(Bengal Gram) soaked overnight
2 cups Basmati rice
3 tb sps chopped onions
1t sp ginger paste
11/2 t sp garlic paste
2 tomatoes chopped or 2tb sps tomato puree
Whole masalas for the rice
5-7 green cardmoms
3 1" sticks of cinamon
11 pepper corns
3 bay leaves
Dry masalas for the channa
1 tb sp dhania(coriander) powder
1/2 t sp chilli powder
1/2 t sp haldi (turmeric) powder
1 t sp garam masala made with coarsely ground (3green cardmoms, 1" stick cinamon, 3 cloves 5 peppercorns)
Msalas for the layers
1 large onion sliced fine and fried crisp.
1 cup fresh chopped mint and coriander leaves and 3 green chillies
2 tb sps cooking oil
2 tb sps pure ghee (clarified butter)
a good pinch of saffron strands soaked in 1 tb sp milk
1/2 - 1 t sp kewra essence for the aroma
- Wash and soak the rice for 1/2 an hour.
- Boil 8 cups of water in a large saucepan with 2 t sps of salt and all the whole masalas. Add the washed rice and boil till its almost cooked.
- Drain the excess water and spread the rice in a platter so that the grains stay separate.
- Heat the oil in a pressure cooker, fry the chopped onions till golden brown.
- Add the ginger garlic pastes and fry till the raw smell goes.
- Add the dry masalas with a little bit of water and fry for 3 minutes.
- Now add the channa that has been soaked over night.
- Add the tomatoes/tomato puree and cook for a further 5 minutes.
- Add the coarsely ground garam masala and mix well.
- Add 21/2 cups of water, close the lid and pressure cook on high heat till high pressure is reached.Lower heat and cook for 10 minutes.
- Let the cooker cool down , open the lid and dry out the excess water if any.It should be moist with thick masala but no curry.
- Now you are ready to put the biryani together.
- Take an over proof dish and spread the ghee at the bottom.
- Divide the rice into 3 portions and spread 1 part in the dish.
- Layer the rice with the fried onion, green mint , coriander and green chillies.
- Add a layer of 1/2 the cooked channa and top with a layer of rice.
- Repeat another layer similarly and top with the 3rd portion of rice.You are ready to add the flavours.
- With your finger ,make holes in the layers of rice . Pour a few drops of the saffron milk into each hole along with a few drops of Kewra essence (optinal).
- Cover and seal with aluminium foil .Cook in a pre heated oven for about 20 minutes.Alternately cook on an indirect low flame (on dum).
- Open the foil just before serving.
- Serve with raita of your choice.