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Recipe for :

Mutton Biryani

This is one of the recipes that has been provided by Vandana who is very much a keen cook of Indian dishes. Hopefully there will be more to come!

I asked Vandana for a little background information:

"I live in Pune, India. I am a South Indian so many of my recipes are from that area. I enjoy cooking and my family and friends do say that it is appetizing! By profession I am a Relocation Consultant and the India head of an International Charity. I hope that covers the introduction".


450 gm tender lamb meat, cubed
225 gm yogurt
1/2 tsp salt
1 inch ginger sliced
4 - 6 cloves
1 green chili chopped
1/4 tsp mace and nutmeg
1 - 2 dry red chilies
1 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric powder

For the rice:
450 gm basmati rice
1 inch cinnamon stick
10 cloves
2 bay leaves
2 tsp black pepper
8 cardamoms
1 tsp black cumin seeds
1/2 cup mixed nuts like almonds or cashewnuts
1/4 cup chopped mint leaves
juice of 2 lemons
1/4 tsp saffron soaked in 1/2 cup of warm milk
1 cup chopped coriander leaves
225 gm ghee or oil
few drops of rose essence( opt.)


Preparation of the meat:

  • Except for the meat, mix all the salt, sliced ginger, cloves, chopped green chili, mace, nutmeg, dry red chilies, cumin seeds, turmeric powder and half of the yogurt and grind in a mixer until it becomes a fine paste.
  • Place meat in a mixing bowl and pour over the spice mixture and remaining yogurt, mix and leave overnight in a fridge.

For the rice:

  • Wash the rice well and soak in a little water for 30 minutes.
  • Drain the rice.
  • Bring a large saucepan of water to boil, add 2/3 tsp of salt and put the rice.
  • Add cinnamon, cloves, bay leaves, peppers, cardamoms and black cumin seeds.
  • Cook for 5 minutes or until rice grains are half cooked.
  • Drain well.

Cooking the meat:

  • In a large saucepan place meat and marinade. Even it out, sprinkle over half lemon juice, coriander leaves, mint leaves, mixed nuts and finely drained rice. Level the surface and sprinkle on top remaining coriander leaves, lemon juice, mint leaves and saffron milk.
  • Make a few holes for the steam to escape, with the handle of a wooden spoon and pour melted ghee or oil on top.
  • Cover the top with a sheet of aluminum foil and put the saucepan lid on top. Place the pan on a low heat for 45 - 50 minutes turning the saucepan clock wise at intervals for even cooking.

Serve the Biryani hot with raitha or poppadams.