Last Sunday I was watching a Bengali movie in television and I must admit I liked the concept of the movie. I am not a movie freak, especially I don’t like to watch movie in television as every 10 minutes there is an advertisement break of 15 minutes which is irritating. However, this movie “Swade Allahade”was specially premiered first only on television and the reason I thought of watching it since I saw the trailer of the movie based on food. It is a story of a lady who was being ignored by her husband and in-laws,who later shined as a food chef cum businesswoman of a famous food delivery retail chain along with her friend. I like the concept because this is a booming industry and lot of home chefs, home bakers, food bloggers are making their journey memorable which has been captured by the director.
So I had planned to watch the movie and hence I kept ready our dinner preparation before hand. It was Sunday, so prepared biryani. But this time it was paneer biryani which is a hit dish among vegetarians, paneer lovers as well as non-veg lovers too. It takes very less time compared to non-veg biryani. Try this easy and exotic paneer biryani this weekend.
Paneer – 200 gms, cut into rectamgular 11/2 inch blocks
Basmati Rice – 11/2 cups
Onion – 1 medium, sliced
Onion – 2 medium
Ginger Paste – 2 teaspoon
Garlic – 10 cloves
Green Chilli – 3 to 4
Coriander Leaves – handful
Tomato Paste – 1/2 cup
Yogurt – 1/2 cup
Turmeric Powder – 1/2 teaspoon
Coriander Powder – 11/2 teaspoon
Garam Masala Powder – 1 teaspoon
Cumin Powder – 1 teaspoon
Red Chilli Powder – 1 teaspoon
Cinnamon Stick – 2 inch long
Cloves – 3 to 4
Peppercorn – 4 to 8
Green Cardamom – 3 to 4
Kabab Chini – 4 to 8
Mace – 2
Star Anise – 2
Nutmeg – 1
Biryani Masala Powder – 2 teaspoon (Any Good Brand)
Milk – 1 tablespoon
Saffron – few strands
Kewra Water – few drops
Ghee – 1 tablespoon+1 teaspoon for greasing
Refined Oil – 6 tablespoon
Salt to taste
Sugar – 1 teaspoon
Lime Juice – 2 teaspoon
1. Soak the rice for 20 minutes. Boil water and add half of the whole spices and add the rice to cook until 70 to 75% done. Drain the water and spread the rice in big plates so that they don’t stick with each other.
2. In a blender take onion, garlic, green chilli and coriander leaves and make a smooth paste and keep aside.
3. Heat oil and fry the sliced onions using salt and sugar until crisp.
4. If you have kept the paneer in refrigerator, then keep it in warm water for half an hour and then cut into blocks.
5. Heat oil and saute the paneer blocks with garam masala powder and salt. Once cooled marinate them with lime juice.
6. Soak the saffron strands in warm milk for sometime. Then take little cooked rice and and mix saffron milk in it to get orange coloured rice. You can also use orange food colour, however saffron milk gives a nice aroma to the dish.
7. Now heat oil and ghee mixed together and add remaining whole spices, saute for few minutes.
8. Next add the paste of onion, garlic, coriander and green chilli. Also add ginger paste at this time.
Cook until raw smell is gone.
9. Add dry spice powders (turmeric, red chilli, cumin, coriander and biryani masala powder). Mix them well.
10. Now add tomato puree and cook until raw smell disappears. Finally add beaten curd and stir continuously for few minutes to avoid curdling. Add the sauteed paneer cubes into the masala and mix them lightly so that paneer blocks remain unbroken.
11. It is time to layer your biryani. You can do it in a big vessel when you are making large batch. For small batch either you can assemble in a vessel or just in a microwave safe bowl so that you can heat it in microwave before serving.
12. For layering, grease the vessel and put a bottom layer of paneer with masala. Next put some white rice and some saffron coloured rice mixed together, few drops kewra water and some fried onions. Again put a paneer layer and thus follow the same layering for two to three layers.
13. Now close the lid of the vessel and keep it on hot iron skillet for 10 minutes before serving. Serve with raita.