Hyderabadi Mutton Dum Biriyani

Post #450 - I know it's not easy to accomplish these many posts in less than 2 years of blogging, but Alhamdulillah, it has happened. I was expecting myself to slow down the pace of blogging however that has still not happened. As I have written in all my milestone posts before, this would not have been possible if it was not for all of you. The hits, the comments and the kind gestures from my beautiful viewers have kept me going despite all the odds. Alhamdulillah... Allah has given me this blog and everything that has come by it as a way to keep me strong and believe in His Will... InShaAllah, as I say always, I would love to continue till it is possible for me with all my strength...

Another Eid-ul-Adha has dawned upon us. Many of our Muslim brothers and sisters are performing Hajj. Though I had not made it evident on the blog, I had gone for Umrah in February. Each time I see the pictures of the Ka'abah and the Madina Mosque, or hear the recitation of Sheikh Sudais, my heart yearns to go back to that blessed land. I strongly believe that trip came my way to discover many hidden matters of life that I never knew off. It is so easy to say that life is not a bed of roses, but it does take some bitter realization to appreciate that fact and take it into your stride. Alhamdulillah, it couldn't have come at a right time. Now though I yearn to go for Hajj, I have to wait for His call. InShaAllah, hopefully soon... Last year, I had my whole family here - my parents, my sister... we had a rocking time in every sense of the word. This year, it is totally different. I am having an Eid with zero plans. Every year, the feeling, the people differ... slowly but steadily learning to take everything positively, Alhamdulillah....

I wanted a more recent post to be a part of this little moment on my blog and therefore chose this biriyani that was cooked a couple of weeks ago. That doesn't mean that you can ask me how old my posts are! Hehe... it depends, totally! And what better opportunity to post this, especially with Eid around! It has been my wish to make the Hyderabadi Mutton Dum Biriyani for quite some time, though somehow I had never got a chance to try. It was my B's request that triggered the need to make it. I sat searching on the web, went through a lot of links and videos to know how it is made. Then I came to learn that there are two ways of making it - Pakki and Kachchi. Pakki is where the meat is partly cooked and the remaining is cooked on dum. In the Kachchi method, you layer raw meat and cook the entire meat with the rice on dum. Now that's really interesting, though somehow the idea of layering raw marinated meat along with rice was something I just couldn't digest. Maybe, when I gather some courage to do that, I would definitely go ahead and do it. This may not be an authentic way of doing it, but I was pleased with the way it turned out to be - even though the taste was different from how a friend of mine make it, I guess it's the change in hands! Hehe... In case you wish to try, do split your job into two days! I fried the onions and marinated the mutton the night before and then did the remaining procedures the next day morning. It was quite a breeze to do it that way. Off to the way I made it...

Hyderabadi Mutton Dum Biriyani
Serves 4


For the masala:
3 large onions, sliced
Oil for frying
750 gm mutton pieces, washed and drained
1/2 cup yogurt, beaten
1 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp Kashmiri red chilli powder
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
Salt to taste
3 green chillies, finely chopped
1 tbsp chopped mint
1 tbsp chopped coriander
Juice of 2 lemon
2 tbsp vinegar

For the rice:
2 1/2 cup basmati rice
3 cloves
A small peice cinnamon
2 cardamoms
1 tbsp cumin seeds
Juice of 1 lemon

For the dum:
1 tbsp ghee
100 ml milk
A generous pinch of saffron
2 tbsp chopped mint
2 tbsp chopped coriander


Heat sufficient oil. Fry the onions till golden brown. Reserve the oil.

Boil the mutton in some water with salt and 1/2 tsp turmeric for 10 minutes. Drain. Reserve the water.

Put the mutton into a bowl. Add all ingredients from yogurt to vinegar, along with  half the fried onions and mix well. Allow to marinate overnight in the fridge.

Warm the milk and soak the saffron in it, till use.

Bring the marinated mutton to room temperature the next day morning. Pressure cook the mutton with the marinate and the reserved oil used for frying for one whistle, not more. Allow the pressure to go by itself.

Wash and drain the rice. Soak it for 30 minutes in the reserved mutton stock. Drain.

Boil lots of water with the whole spices, cumin, lemon juice and salt. Add the rice and allow to cook for 3-5 minutes. The rice needs to be only half done. Drain the rice immediately.

Now we will put the dum. Heat a chapathi tawa. In a warm non-stick pan, sprinkle ghee and half the saffron milk at the bottom. Put half the mutton, then half the rice. Sprinkle half of the remaining fried onions, and half of the mint and coriander. Top with the rest of the mutton and marinate, rice and finally with the remaining fried onions, mint and coriander. Sprinkle the remaining saffron milk over. Cover with aluminium foil, close the lid tight. For a pictorial reference, do check out this link!

Keep the dum biriyani on the tawa. Keep the hot drained rice water in a bowl on top, just to tighten it up a bit more. Keep on high flame for around 10 minutes. Then keep on the lowest flame for around an hour. Switch off and leave for 15-20 minutes for the rice to rest. Open the rice, and mix well with a spatula. Serve hot with raita, pappad and pickle!


1. Normally, the mutton is tenderized by using some raw papaya paste. Since I didn't have papaya, I went in for vinegar. You can even use the meat tenderizer you get in shops, though it is not recommended.
2. Do not dry off the mutton stock after it is cooked. It will all dry off once the dum is done.
3. Take care while cooking rice. After three minutes of boiling it, check for doneness. If there is a nice bite in it, immediately drain it. It will get cooked while in dum.
4. I thought the spice was too much when the masala was being layered, however once the biriyani was cooked, there was hardly any! Do increase the green chillies or the red chilli powder if you like your biriyani to be spicy.

Looking for a chicken option? Then I have got it for you here! :)

I am gladly linking this post to my buddies - Monu and Haffa - event for Eid, called Meat Lover's Month...

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