Biryani

Biryani

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1" piece ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. coriander seed, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom seeds, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon peppercorn, ground
  • 3" long cinnamon stick
  • 1 lb. lamb, boneless, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 4 oz.s dried apricots, cut in half
  • 4 oz.s raisins
  • 2 oz.s cashew nuts
  • 2 oz.s slivered almonds
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups uncooked basmati rice, (approx. 4 cups cooked rice)
  • 3 Tbsp. butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads, soaked in 2 Tbsp. boiling water for 10 minutes
  • 2 oz.s pistachio nuts (or almonds or pecans)

Instructions

Melt the butter in a large, heavy skillet. Lightly saute the onions, ginger, and garlic for about 5 minutes--till the onions are translucent. Add cumin, coriander, cardamom, peppercorns, and cinnamon stick, and saute for about 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the lamb cubes to the spice mixture. Saute for about 10 minutes, until seared and brown. Add apricots, raisins, cashews, half the almonds, bay leaves, and salt. Add the chicken stock, cover and simmer until lamb is tender, about 35 minutes. Remove from heat and discard bay leaves and cinnamon stick. In a large casserole dish (3+ quart), pour 1 Tbsp. melted butter. Put 1/3 of rice in the bottom. Sprinkle with 1/3 of the saffron water. Cover with half the meat and fruit mixture. Add another third of the rice and saffron water. Add the remaining meat and fruit mixture, reserving the pan juices. Finish with a layer of rice, sprinled with remaining saffron water. Pour pan juices over the top. Sprinkly with pistachios, remaining alminds, and remaining melted butter. Cover and bake for 20 to 30 minutes at 350 F.

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