Vegetable Dum Biriyani

Vegetable Dum Biriyani prepared in a traditional dum style looks heavenly and aromatic. Basically preparing dum style biriyani involves 4 steps. In the first step sliced onions are fried till golden brown. In second step Rice is half cooked in whole spices like bay leaf,Cumin Seeds,salt and Some Ghee and kept aside. In the third step Vegetables are also half cooked in oil,spices,salt and Yogurt. In the fourth step layering part of Rice and Vegetables and allowing it to cook on slow fire is done. For additional flavor in restaurants Rose water or Kewra essence is also used.This rice is less spicy and can go along well with any gravy curry. As we have added many  vegetables to prepare this dish we just need Raita or Curd  to serve Vegetable Biriyani. Though the process looks long it will not take more than 40 minutes.

Preparation time: 15 Minute
Cooking time: 30 Minutes
serves:  8 to 10 Servings  

Ingredients :

  1. Basmati Rice : 2 Cups
  2. Cumin Seeds : 1 Teaspoon
  3. Coriander powder : 1 Teaspoon
  4. Cumin Powder : ½ Teaspoon
  5. Salt : 1 Tablespoon (According to taste)
  6. Bay Leaf : 2
  7. Garam Masala or Biriyani Masala : 1 Teaspoon
  8. Red chili powder: ½  Teaspoon (According to taste)
  9. Turmeric : ½ Teaspoon
  10. Yogurt / Curd /  : 250 Ml (1 Cup)
  11. Ghee or oil : 4 To 5 Tablespoons
  12. Saffron strands : 5 to 6 Strands (Soak in ½ Cup Milk)
  13. Raisins : 2 Tablespoons
  14. Cashews : 10 To 12
  15. Ginger Garlic paste : 1 Tablespoon
  16. Ginger Julianne: few for garnishing

Vegetables :

  1. Onions: 3 Medium sized(Sliced)
  2. Cauliflower florets : 8 Medium sized
  3. Potato : 1 Large (Cut into cubes)
  4. Carrot : 1 large (Cut into small pieces)
  5. Green peas: ½  Cup
  6. Beans : ½ Cup (Cut into small pieces)
  7. Mint leaves / Pudina : A small bunch (Finely chopped)
  8. Coriander leaves : A small bunch (Finely chopped )
  9. Green chilies: 3 to 4 (slit)                                                                                                              

Whole Dry spices :

  1. Green cardamoms : 5
  2. Black cardamom : 2 (Optional)
  3. Mace : 2 big strands
  4. Star anise: 1
  5. Cloves : 4
  6. Cinnamon stick : 1 inch
  7. Black Peppercorns : 8 to 10
  8. Bay leaf: 2
  9. Shahi jeera : ½ Teaspoon                                                                                                                     IMG_2435

  Procedure : 

  1. Heat 2 Tablespoons of oil  in a pan. Fry cashew nuts and raisins till golden. Transfer them to a bowl and keep aside.                                                                                                          IMG_2468
  2. Add thinly sliced onions in to the same pan and fry them in oil till golden and crisp. Remove 1/2  of fried onions to a bowl and keep aside.                                                                
  3. In the same pan add all the whole Dry Spices and saute till they begin to sizzle.             IMG_2470
  4. Add Ginger Garlic paste and fry for 2 to 3 minutes to remove raw smell and to get nice golden color.                                                                                                                                             IMG_2472
  5. Add potatoes and the rest of vegetables. Stir fry  for 2 to 3 minutes on a medium flame.                                                                                                                                                        IMG_2473
  6. Add turmeric, Biryani masala powder, Coriander powder, Cumin powder and Red chili powder. Mix and fry well for 2 minutes till you begin to get nice  aroma.                            IMG_2476
  7. Pour 100 ml yogurt and mix. Stir fry and cook till the vegetables are little tender. It may take 5 to 7 minutes. Ensure that vegetables are not over cooked.                                 IMG_2480
  8. While vegetables are cooking , In a separate Deep Pan bring 8 cups of water to a boil. Add Shah Jeera, Bay Leaf, 1 Tablespoon of Oil and  1 Teaspoon Salt and cook rice till ¾ cooked. Drain rice and keep aside.(See that Rice is not over cooked). Rice should be grainy.                                                                                                                                                         IMG_2487
  9. Soak saffron in 1/2 cup of  hot milk. Keep  aside. (You can soak Saffron in 3 Tablespoons warm  water also).                                                                                                         IMG_1815
  10. Now the layering part of the Biriyani. You can spread all the Vegetables at the bottom of the pan in a single layer and arrange Rice on top and sprinkle Mint and fried Onions on top and sprinkle other spices. You can finish it in a single step.(I have done it in 2 layers).
  11. If you want  to make a 2 layer veg Biryani, set aside ½  of the cooked vegetable mix.Spread  Vegetables at the bottom of the utensil. Pour rest of the yogurt, some mint, coriander, 1/2 of fried nuts and raisins, few fried onions.  You can do it in a pressure cooker or any heavy bottom utensil.                                                                               
  12. Layer half of the Rice over the vegetable mix.                                                                               IMG_2493
  13. Then layer the remaining cooked vegetable mix and 2 pinches of Biryani masala powder and some Cumin powder.Sprinkle some fried onions, mint and coriander.             IMG_2498                            
  14. Layer remaining Rice over it again, then the fried onions, mint and coriander leaves and pour  saffron milk.                                                                                                                          
  15. Spread fried Cashew nuts and raisins over the Rice. Place a moist clean cloth to seal the rim. You can even use a foil or dough to seal the utensil. (Take 2 cups of wheat flour and add enough  water to prepare dough).                                                                          IMG_2502
  16. Place the Dum utensil on a hot Tawa and cook for 5 minutes on a medium flame and then on low flame  for 20 to 25 minutes based on the thickness of your utensil.Switch off the flame.(AS all the Vegetables and Rice are half cooked, the purpose of cooking in a Dum is to just enhance the flavor,texture and aroma). Leave Biriyani for 10 minutes to rest before opening the lid. Mix rice and vegetables gently once before serving.                                    
  17.  Garnish Biriyani with some Ginger julienne.Serve Vegetable Biriyani along with some Raita and Lemon rings.                                          IMG_2519

Note:

To avoid burning of the vegetables at the bottom of the utensil add enough curd for the first layer of vegetables mix. Layering of biriyani can be done in 2 layers or more. But do remember to finish the layering always with Rice on top. Sprinkling  some Saffron milk, finely chopped coriander,Mint and fried onions always on top of each layer of Rice gives the flavor, color and aroma to Rice.After layering you can also keep this in Microwave Oven for 15 to 20 minutes in a microwave oven dish. Do sprinkle some Ghee on top of the Rice for nice aroma. You can use other vegetables of your choice like capsicum, Broccoli etc.You can also use Soya Nuggets (soaked in warm water and squeezed).You can increase the amount of Green chillies and Red Chilli powder to make it more spicy.

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