Friday, April 24, 2009

Chickpea Biriyani

This is a simple recipe, although verrry yummy.
How can I thank you enough, Chithi for this simply wonderful recipe! My Chithi(my mom's younger sister) is an amazing cook. I remember the almond halwas she brought us once when she came to visit us. Literally melts in your mouth. My salivary glands were suddenly in fifth gear. Makes your cheeks hurt.

My first taste of bagara baingan was when she made it along with my youngest chithi in my grandmother's kitchen. Then came another delicacy - stuffed bhindi masala, oh I won't even start.

So one day I beleive 3 or 4 years ago, she sends this handwritten & scanned recipe of her channa biriyani in an email. I jumped on it instantly. All the little monkeys that I served this dish to have loved eating it. I don't let their mommies leave without telling them how easy it is to make it. Kudos to you Chithi!!

Ingredients -
Basmathi Rice - rinsed and drained - 2 cups
Onion - 1 medium or large
Garlic - 1 or 2 pods, sliced
Ginger - 1 inch piece, sliced
Green chillies - 1 or 2 or more according to taste
Tomatoes - 2 medium, diced
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
White Kabuli chana - soaked in water overnight - 1 cup
Salt - according to taste

Whole spices -
Clove - 6 or 8
Cinnamon - 1 inch piece
Cardamoms - 5 or 6
Saunf - 1/2 tsp, optional

Method -
Heat about 2 tbsp ghee and add the whole spices. When they slightly brown, add the onions, ginger and garlic, and green chillies. Saute for about 5 minutes until the onions have softened. Now add the tomatoes, turmeric powder and salt. Mix well and cover with a tight fitting lid for about 2-3 minutes.

After the tomatoes are partially cooked, add the soaked channa and mix well. Now, to this mixture, add the rice and saute. To make sure the grains don't get broken, do this quite gently. Saute for about 4-5 minutes, then transfer to a pan (that you can put inside a pressure cooker).

Add 4 cups of water, check for salt, and pressure cook like you do rice. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve.

Lil Miss Bubbly looves to pick out the channa and eat them first. Then she mixes up the rest with curd and enjoys it, with the proclamation - yes, you guessed it. Makes Mommy smile :)

LOL. Enjoy!

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