Biryanis are synonymous with Hyderabad!The Hyderabadi Dum Biryani is quite famous. So is the use of palak in their dishes. In Mumbai, if at all you order for a Hyderabadi biryani…whether veg or non veg… You will be served a green biryani. That set me thinking. Actually it’s my personal favourite too. So my added twist here is that I have added soya chunks to this recipe and amalgamated the quintessential Hyderabadi Veg Biryani with the Paalak biryani to make a Veg Hyderabadi Paalak Biryani.
If you like Biryanis and Paalak too, do go through my following recipes too :
2) Paalak Daal
3) Paalak Raita
4) Mori Vade
2 cups Basmati rice
8 cups Water (for boiling rice)
2 tsp salt (to be added to rice)
1/4 cup Dry soya chunks
1/4 cup Chopped carrots
1/4 cup Chopped french beans
1/4 cup Green peas
1/4 cup chopped cauliflower
1/4 cup Chopped capsicum
3 Medium potatoes (chopped into small cubes or slices)
2 Small Tomatoes
2 Large onions (For the gravy)
3 Large onions (For frying)
1 tbs Ginger paste
1 Tbs Garlic paste
Oil for frying the onions and for the gravy.
FOR MAKING THE SPINACH PUREE:
1 Small bunch paalak(spinach)
1/2 cup Fresh Corriander
1/2 cup Fresh Mint leaves
2-3 Green chillies
WHOLE SPICES FOR THE RICE:
1 inch piece Cinnamon
1/4 tsp cumin
WHOLE SPICES FOR THE BIRYANI :
2 inch piece Cinnamon
1 Big Cardamom
1 Bay leaf
1/2 tsp Shahi jeera
1/4 piece Mace( javitri)
DRY SPICE POWDERS FOR THE BIRYANI
1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
1 tsp Red chilli powder1
1/2 tsp Corriander powder
2 tsp Garam Masala powder
Salt to taste
FOR LAYERING THE BIRYANI :
1//4 cup corriander leaves ( chopped)
1/4 cup mint leaves ( roughly torn)
1/2 cup milk
6-7 strands Saffron
1. Begin with washing the rice well and soaking it in sufficient water for half an hour.
2. In a saucepan boil water, almost triple the quantity of rice or more with salt and the whole spices mentioned above.
3, When the water comes to a boil, add the soaked rice and cook till almost done. When almost a bite remains in the grains, drain the rice in a sieve. Keep aside.
4. Heat a bowl of milk and soak the saffron in it.
5. In the meantime you can start by slicing the onions and deep frying them in hot oil to get birista. Add a pinch of salt to get crispy fried onions. Then fry the potatoes.
6. In another vessel boil sufficient water to boil the vegetables except the capsicum.
7. Add the cauliflower first to the boiling water. After about 6 minutes add the rest of the vegetables. When almost done drain from the water and keep aside.
8. Heat sufficient water in a vessel and soak the soya chunks in it for 10-15 minutes. After that drain from water, wash thoroughly and squeeze tightly to discard any extra water.
9. For the biryani, in another vessel heat oil and add to it all the whole spices mentioned. Now add the chopped onions and saute on high flame. Add a bit of salt to it.
10. When onions turn translucent, add ginger garlic paste and mix well. After a while add turmeric and the chopped tomatoes.
11. Mix well and cover and cook for a while.
12. Add all the other dry spice powders and mix well. At this time, puree the palak with other mentioned ingredients.
13. Add the paalak puree and mix well. Keep stirring on high flame for a while. Now add the beaten curds to the gravy and stir continuously on high flame.
14. Add the soya chunks and mix well. Cover and cook. After a few minutes add the boiled vegetables, salt to taste. Mix well.
15. Adjust seasoning or masalas now. Add most of the fried onions reserving little for layering and garnishing.
16. When all water has evaporated and the gravy has thickened, close the flame.
17. Keep a thick griddle to heat on the stove top.
18. Start layering the biryan in a handi. Start with spreading half the gravy at the bottom. Cover with rice. Spread some ghee fried onions, corriander leaves and mint over it.
19. Repeat the same process with the remaining gravy and rice.
20. Cover the vessel with aluminium foil and shut the lid tightly over it. Keep vessel on the hot griddle for dum.
21. Keep flame high for first 3 minutes and then on low flame for about 6-7 minutes.
22. Keep covered for few more minutes. Open and mix a bit or serve in layers.
23. Serve hot with Burani raita or boondi raita and some sliced onions.