Lamb biryani

Prep 1 h : 0 m
Cook 1 h : 30 m


  • 2 tbsp crushed garlic

    2 tbsp grated ginger

    3-4 chillies, seeded and chopped

    6-8 cinnamon sticks

    8 cardamom pods

    6 allspice berries

    2 tsp ground turmeric

    8 cloves

    1 tbsp chilli powder

    2 tbsp ground coriander

    2 tbsp ground cumin

    275ml yogurt

    30g fresh coriander, chopped

    125ml lemon juice

    1kg boned leg of lamb, cubed

    1 tbsp oil

    10 medium-sized potatoes, peeled

    300ml brown lentils, cooked

    500g parboiled basmati rice

    2 large onions, sliced and deep-fried until crisp

    A pinch of saffron

    50ml cold butter

    Raita, to serve


  • Mix the garlic, ginger and chillies and all the other spices except the saffron with the yogurt in a large bowl.

    Add the fresh coriander, lemon juice and the lamb.

    Season with salt.

    Stir well to coat the meat.

    Set aside to marinate for 2 hours or preferably overnight.

    Heat oil in a large heavy-based saucepan over medium to low heat.

    Cover the base of the saucepan with the potatoes.

    Cover with the quarter of the lentils and a quarter of the rice.

    Top with all of the meat (leave the excess yogurt marinade in the dish) and top with half the fried onions.

    Mix half the remaining rice with the yogurt that was left in the marinating dish.

    Layer the rice on top of the onions and sprinkle with half of the remaining lentils.

    Mix the remaining lentils with the remaining rice.

    Add this to the pot.

    Top with the remaining fried onions.

    Soak the saffron in 50ml warm water and drizzle around the edges.

    Dot with butter.

    Cover with a tight-fitting lid and steam over a low heat for an hour and a half.

    Don’t life the lid during the cooking.

    Serve with raita.