It was only till recent that I learned the difference between Akni and Biryani. Mom always made Akni but called it Biryani so I was set into the world confused haha. A mix of me and mom in this recipe. Hope you enjoy!
3 cups of basmati rice
3 lb whole chicken cut in pieces
2 medium onions sliced
2 tablespoon garlic paste divided
2 tablespoons ginger paste divided
2 sticks of cinnamon
6 bay leaves
8 whole cloves
Pinch of cumin seeds
1.5 tsp cumin
1 tsp turmeric
1.5 tsp corriander
1 tsp garam masala
Salt to taste
Chili peppers (optional)
Soak basmati rice in water while you cook your chicken.
Heat oil in a pot and add in half the whole spices. (1 cinnamon stick, 4 whole cloves, 3 bay leaves) you can add cardamom at this point. I’m not a fan of those guys.
Let the spices cook for a minute before added one medium onion.
Add a tablespoon of each garlic and ginger paste and salt to taste. Let that cook a few minutes.
Add in cumin, turmeric, corriander and garam masala.
Let the spices cook with the onions.
Add in pieces of chicken and leave flame on high for a few minutes. Lower the heat and let it cook completely for 20+ minutes.
Chicken is done, now time for the rice.
In another pot heat ghee. I put in 1 tbs of ghee and about 2 tbs of oil. You can use all ghee for this, but I opt out of using so much. Add in the rest of the cinnamon, bay leaves, whole cloves and pinch of cumin seeds. Heat for a minute and add in onions and rest of onion and ginger paste with salt to taste.
Rinse and drain rice to add to the pot. Mix to get covered in all the oil/ghee. Let grains toast but not overmixing to break.
Add chicken to the pot and mix with the rice. Put 3.5 cups of water in the pot you used for the chicken to get all the flavors left in there. Then proceed to add that to the rice pot.
Give that a good stir. Add chili peppers if you choose. Let that come to a slight boil while you take the lid to the pot and use a kitchen napkin to tie.
Like this! This is to prevent any air from escaping the pot to cook the rice. Put the heat on low and this should take 20 mins. Do a press check to see if the rice is cooked through.
Garnish with cilantro. *Add hard boiled eggs if you like.