Cook Royally: Subz Dum Biryani

Halogen OvenFestivals in India are a time for meeting and greeting, which invariably means a lot of guests. That in turn translates into ‘lunches’ and ‘dinners’. And there is nothing like sharing a meal of home-cooked exotic Subz Dum Biryani.

Brimming with flavours, spices and assorted vegetables the Subz Dum Biryani makes for a delicious full-filling meal. Its unique flavor, aroma and taste are derived from its namesake cooking technique – ‘Dum’ meaning ‘slow cooking’. But count not the seconds, minutes and hours of toil for the technologically advanced Usha Halogen Oven will help you cook this prized recipe in a blink without compromising on its uniqueness.

The right way to cook this dish is to place the ingredients inside a earthen pot and seal it tight with dough to prevent the steam from escaping, which allows the spices to give the rice an enchanting mouthwatering aroma and flavor, reminiscent of royal Mughal Kitchens.  But in absence of time and in lieu of an entourage of chefs from the royal kitchen, the Usha Halogen Oven is the perfect kitchen appliance to cook it easily at home. Its unique enclosed shape ensures that steam is trapped inside it, infusing the various flavours into your Briyani. While the aforementioned technological innovation doesn’t only do this fast, but does it with a simple touch of button retaining not just the aroma and falvour but also the nutrients present in the vegetables – making it the perfect Subz Dum Biryani.

Ingredients: (Serves 4)

Rice

  • 1½ cups basmati rice
  • 4-5 chhoti illaichi (green cardamom),
  • 2 tej patta (bay leaves), 5-6 laung (cloves)
  • 4 tsp salt, 1 tbsp lemon juice, 10 cups water

 Vegetables

  • 2 thin carrots – cut into cubes, 20 french beans – cut into 1″ pieces
  • ½ of a small cauliflower – cut into very small florets (1 cup)
  • 2 onions – chopped
  • 3 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder, 1 tsp salt

 Mix together nicely

  • 1 cup curd
  • 1 tbsp mint – chopped finely, 1 tbsp coriander – chopped finely
  • 1-2 drops kewra essence, ¾ tsp salt
  • Crushed spices together
  • ½ tsp shah jeera (black cumin), seeds of 2 moti illaichi, 1 dalchini, 2-3 blades javetri (mace)
  • Other ingredients
  • 2 tbsp melted ghee and 2 tbsp oil
  • 2 onions – sliced and deep fried, a few mint leaves
  • A few strands kesar – soaked in 1 tsp hot water
  • 2 tbsp melted ghee
  • To seal
  • Aluminium foil and dough

Method:

  1. Wash rice several times. Strain. Let it be in the strainer for 30 minutes. (do not soak).
  2. Boil rice in 10 cups water with all ingredients till rice is a little chewy and not fully soft. Strain. Now spread rice in a big tray on a cloth. Remove whole spices from the cooked rice and discard them. Mix 1 cup cooked rice with kesar to colour the grains. Now mix this coloured rice with the white rice.
  3. Heat 2 tbsp ghee and 2 tbsp oil. Add chopped onions to the pan, stir till golden.
  4. Add half of the crushed spices. Stir for 30 seconds on low heat. Add 3 tsp ginger-garlic paste. Mix. Add red chilli powder. Add salt. Add vegetables and bhuno for 2 minutes. Cook covered on low heat till vegetables turn crisp tender. Do not overcook.
  5. Remove from fire. Let it cool down. Add the curd, stirring continuously. Mix well.
  6. To assemble the biryani, take a handi. Grease it. Spread ½ of the rice in the dish. Spread vegetables along with curd over the rice. Spread remaining rice. Sprinkle remaining crushed spices and 2 tbsp of melted ghee over the rice. Sprinkle some mint and crispy fried onions. Cover with foil.
  7.  Seal foil with atta dough. Put the dish/handi on low rack in the halogen oven. Press speed up mode and set at 120°C for 20 minutes. Press start and give dum to biryani. Serve hot.

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