Malabar Mutton Biriyani

Yikes! Another biriyani??? I sometimes feel I am overdoing the biriyanis on my blog... or is it just a thought? Just to let you know that this was the last biriyani I made in our old home... and I have no more biriyanis pending in my drafts, so maybe you don't get to see another biriyani recipe at least for another month! Hehe...

I have already posted a Malabar Chicken Biriyani on the blog before. This one with mutton is slightly different from the chicken version. At home, umma makes mutton the same way she makes the chicken, with the variation only in the cooking time. When I saw a different version in one of the cookery books, I wanted to try it. This is a very simple biriyani, with ingredients in your pantry and does not take much time. That is what I like about this recipe. So when you are running out of time but you want to make biriyani, then this is one for you. Off to the way I made it...

Malabar Mutton Biriyani
Recipe adapted from "Classic Malabar Kitchen" by Faiza Ali
Serves 4


500 gm mutton, cleaned and drained
1 tbsp ghee
2 large onions, thinly sliced
3 green chillies, slit
1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp garlic paste
1 large tomato, chopped
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 tsp garam masala powder
1/2 lime squeezed
2 cups basmati rice, washed

For dum:
1/2 cup ghee
1 large onion, sliced
10 cashews
A handful raisins
1 tsp garam masala powder


Heat ghee in a pressure cooker. Add the onions and green chillies and cook till soft. Add the ginger and garlic paste and saute till raw smell is gone. Add the tomato and cook till mashed. Add the turmeric powder and red chilli powder and fry briefly for a couple of minutes. Add the mutton and mix well. Close the lid. Cook for two whistles and switch off. Allow the pressure to go by itself. Add in the garam masala and lime juice, mix well. Set aside. 

Cook the basmati rice in lots of water till 80% done - ie. a bite would remain in the grain. Drain immediately. 

Heat ghee in a frying pan. Fry the onions till browned. Drain and set aside. Fry the cashews, puff the raisins. Drain and set aside. 

Proceed with the dum. For the steps, you can follow this post. Layer the mutton masala at the bottom of the saucepan, followed by half the fried ingredients. Spread the cooked rice on top and sprinkle the remaining fried ingredients and the garam masala powder. Cover tightly with foil and close the lid. Put on dum for 20 minutes. Keep the cover on till serving time. To know more about how to put dum, then you can refer to this post

Mix well before serving. Serve warm with pickle and raita!


This recipe can be adapted to chicken as well, only adjust the cooking time!

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