Lamb Biryani in a pot


Lamb (diced into bite sized pieces) 450g

For the Marinade
Ginger (paste) 1 tbsp
Garlic (paste) 3 cloves
Chili powder 1 tsp
Salt 1 tsp
Turmeric 1 tsp
Coriander powder 2 tsp
Cumin powder 1 tsp
Garam masala powder 3 tsp
Natural yogurt 125 ml + 125 ml (for cooking) (1/3 cup + 1/3 cup)

For Rice
Basmati rice 300 g
Water 1 1/2 liter
Cardamom (whole) 6 pieces
Cloves (whole) 6 pieces
Cinnamon stick 1 inch
Bay leaf 1 piece


Meat Gravy

1. Place all ingredients for the marinade along with the meat, in a glass bowl, mix well and chill for at least 2 hours but ideally over night for more intense flavor.
2. Heat ghee/oil in a pot, add in the marinated lamb, sauté on high heat for 5 minutes while stirring continuously to ensure that the spices are cooked through.
3. Add 1 cup of water, cover and simmer until the lamb becomes tender for about an hour. Add extra water if required.
4. Before switching off the fire, stir in the additional yoghurt.


1. Prepare rice by rinsing it well until the water runs clear. Soak for at least 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in a stock pot, boil 1.2 liters of water with cardamom, cloves, cinnamon stick and bay 3. leaf and add enough salt to make the water salty (slightly more salty than you would like the rice to be).
4. Add the rice and let the water return to a boil. Boil for 3-4 minutes (until the rice suddenly fluffs up to three times its original volume), drain and set aside.

To Assemble

1. Deep fry the remaining onion and set aside on an absorbent towel.
2. Soak saffron in 3 tbsp of hot water and set aside.
3. Place half of the meat and gravy on the base of a stock pot, then sprinkle one half of the mint, coriander, browned onions and slit chilies over it. Evenly spread half of the par cooked rice over it and drizzle a few spoons of the oil in which the onion was fried, repeat the process one more time. Lastly, drizzle the saffron water over it.
4. Cover the pot with an aluminum foil or tight fitting lid and simmer on low heat for 20 minutes. A good indication that your Biryani is ready when the steam escaping from the edges of the lid, starts to reduce, indicating that the liquid on the base has evaporated. Be careful not to burn the base of the pot.
5. Serve hot with the yoghurt raita, which is a mixture of yoghurt, onions, tomato, cucumber, mint and coriander leaves, all finely chopped.

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