Upon touchdown in Dubai, my friends told me I should eat Biryani. Okay, what’s that? Sooner I found out that it was a whole plate of rice and a piece of chicken cooked by some ways I couldn’t understand. hehe But you know, that was a Biryani tasted in one random corner in Al Ghubaiba Bus Station, which could explain my first experience. The rest is history.
Biryani originated in Persia (now Iran) but was massively customized by Indians. Ahm, am I right? In India, Biryani’s taste varies from one state to another. Being employed in a company with so many Indian colleagues, I learned to eat such food whenever parties were there or just when we couldn’t prepare lunch at home. Til such time, Biryani topped my cravings list, hence this awaiting trial of cooking on my own.
Fun, crazy and exciting, deciding to cook this was quite a challenge to me. My room mate even told me that if I liked to do something, I would really do it no matter how hard it would be. Anyway, thanks to YouTube University, my apprehensions became less as step-by-step cooking of Hyderabad style was comprehensively shown.
So, here are the ingredients. Mind you, when I wrote these down, my eyes bulged as I ended up with quite a loooong list. Well, not to mention, most of these are strange to me. I was thinking of going to Lulu or search for a nearby Indian grocery stop and show the paper. Good thing, Carrefour burjuman has them all:
- skinless chicken (600 grams) – I chose the thigh part, my favorite part, eh.
- Basmati rice (250 grams) – Like oh! Huge shelves of Basmati rice. So, which one? I got the one in red pack. Red is my favorite color, so yeah! Haha!
- Curd (400 grams) – Ahm, Uncle Google, what is that? There you go, yogurt is the answer.
- Chopped onions (3 large) – It’s too much, my friend. But okay, go!
- Ginger garlic paste (1 and 1/2 tbps) – Oh, I know this!
- Green chilli (6 pcs large) – and I am making it TEN!
- Chopped mint leaves (1/2 cup) – sounds cool
- Chopped coriander leaves (1 cup) – Hmm, what’s that again?
- Green cardamon (10 pcs) – Hmm, loaaading…
- Lavang/cloves (8 pcs) – LOW-ding… 20 out of 100 percent!
- Cinnamon/Dalchini (2 inch) – I was thinking of Cinnamon bread but lo! Is this a small cigar! (0.0)
- Black cardamon (5 pcs) – Is the green one different?
- Mace/Javitri (2 pcs) – Hmmm, not available.
- Ghee (4 tbps) – Oh, I just learned about this. Buttery butter, baby!
- Cooking oil – Big check!
- Shahi biryani masala powder (3 tbps) – I always see this in Kadooli supermarket!
- Chicken masala powder (1 tbp) – Does another kind of powder make a lot of difference?
- Turmeric powder (1/2 tbps) – too many powdersssss!
- Red chili powder (1 tbps) – I’m starting to think how many cupboards do I need to store all these powderssss… hehehe
- Saffron (soaked in 2 tbps of milk) – This is quite expensive, though. But yes, I’m taking it, I shouldn’t compromise.
- Salt – At last, I finally have something really, really familiar! :p
I considered the cooking quite easier than expected. It was just adding everything in a pan and cooking them all in more or less half an hour. What was hard was the preparation and the doubts of what could the results be.
I modified some things based on my senses and carried on everything with research, patience, sense and love. I believe cooking any dish doesn’t have to be so technical and precise. It is like faith, it is doing something you are sure of though it is something that you cannot even see.
While steaming, I could smell it right and from there, I knew I was doing it well. Among my cooking trials, this is the first dish I’ve cooked that costed a lot of time. But when I love something, I wouldn’t mind. It’s nice to be trying something outside my comfort zone.
For when a Filipina cooks Chicken Biryani, it is damn something like never before!
Tadennnnnnn! Chicken Biryani, served with Sparklings, smiles and love. Enjoy guys ‘coz I really did! *wink
Result: Next time, I should use breast part or thicker part of the meat. Chicken meat was “gone”, leaving only strips for the hungry gang! Hahaha! But I tell you, the gang liked it and left me nothing but burp and tears of chili. Wahaha!
‘Til next time, guys!