Chicken Biriyani

Formerly relegated to a special occasion dish because of its long preparation time, a rice cooker makes fast work of this lovely Indian favorite.
  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into pieces
  • 1 c. fat-free plain yogurt
  • 1 T. vegetable oil
  • 2 T. garam masala -- look for this in the ethnic section with the spices
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 2 T. minced ginger
  • 1 T. minced garlic
  • 1 finely diced onion
  • 3 tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 tsp. red chile powder
  • 2 tsp. tumeric
  • 2 c. basmati rice
  • 5 c. water
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 6 green cardamom pods

The night before you intend to make biriyani, combine the chicken and yogurt in a dish. Refrigerate until you are ready to make the biriyani.

Pour the oil into a rice cooker turned on the HIGH setting. Add the spices (garam masala through garlic) and the onion. Sauté until the onion is golden and the spices are fragrant.

Add the tomatoes, chile powder and turmeric; cook until the tomatoes are soft, about 5 minutes.

Add the chicken and yogurt; cook for an additional 5 minutes.

Add the rice, water, cinnamon sticks (break them into two pieces each) and cardamom pods. Stir, cover and cook until the rice cooker switches itself to the WARM (or OFF on some models) position.

Serve hot and garnish with golden raisins, hard-boiled eggs and nuts.

  • Yields: 6 servings
  • Preparation Time: 20 minutes plus steaming time -- approximately 45 minutes total
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