Biryani is a hugely popular gastronomical delight and considered a perennial favorite of the Indian cuisine, especially during festivities and celebratory occasions.
3 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, finely diced
6 garlic cloves
2 sticks of cinnamon
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
3 teaspoons salt
3 bay leaves
3 cups water
1/4 jar (of a 10-oz jar) Biryani Paste
2 potatoes, peeled, diced, lightly browned
4 ripe tomatoes, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 cup chickpeas, cooked
2 cups of basmati rice, washed and drained
1 cup sweet peas
1/2 cup golden raisins
Heat oil in a heavy, non-stick skillet and saute diced onion until light brown. Add garlic, cinnamon, cumin, salt and bay leaves and stir one minute.
In a 4-quart pot, bring the water and the biryani paste to boil. Add potatoes, tomatoes, carrots, and chickpeas and onion mixture. While stirring, add rice. Bring to boil over high heat the lower heat to medium-low. Add peas and raisins. Do not stir.
Cover and simmer 15 to 20 minutes or until rice absorbs all the broth. Remove from heat and let stand ten minutes. Remove bay leaves and cinnamon sticks. Serve with yogurt or salad.
Biryani paste is a light curry used to make Indian rice casseroles. The rice soaks up the flavor during cooking. The paste is a blend of spices preserved in oil for freshness. Its ingredients include canola oil, coriander, cumin, turmeric, chili pepper, salt, ginger, garlic and acetic acid. You can also use it in meats and vegetables.
Recipe makes 12 servings.
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