From Shagufta's Kitchen: Faria's Mom

Both Faria and her mom Shagufta are excellent cooks. However, Faria always gives Shagufta the due credit for handing down her expert tips to enhance Faria's culinary skills. Faria's most loved dish from her mom's repertoire is Yakhni Chicken Biryani, the recipe of which we are treasuring forever.

Yakhni Chicken Biryani

Yakhni Chicken Biryani


Chicken 1kg

Rice 4 cups

Ingredients for Yakhni

1 small pc Ginger

6-7 pcs Garlic

1 Onion

2 tsp Sauf (Fennel seeds)

4 Black cardamom (Badi Elaichi)

3 tsp SabutDhaniya (Whole coriander)

1.5 tsp Black pepper (Kali mirch)

3 Elaichi (Cardamom)

3 Tez Patta (Bay leaf)

3-4 Phoolchakri (Star Anise)

6-8 Long Colves

3 medium sticks Dalchini (Cinnamon)

2 pinch of Yellow food colour

keora water and 2-3 elaichi

Salt to taste.

Ingredients for Rice Masala

2 medium sized finely chopped onion

4-5 medium sized finely chopped tomatoes

3-4 green chillies cut in pieces

1 bowl curd

1.5 tsp Ginger and Garlic paste

2 Black Cardamom (Badi Elaichi)

3-4 Cardamom (Elaichi)

5-6 Cloves

1 tsp Cumin seeds (Zeera)

1 pc Cinnamon (Dalchini)

1 tsp Garam Masala powder

1.5 tsp Dhaniya powder

Salt to taste


Place the meat in a cooking utensil. Add all the Yakhni Masalas to it.

Add water as per the ratio of the rice taken. (1.5 cup water in 1 cup rice).

Cover the Lid and allow it to cook for 15 minutes.

Once the Yakhni is ready, take a sieve and filter the stock along with the chicken pieces in a separate bowl.

How to prepare Rice Masala

Fry the onions in oil and in same oil add, badielaichi, clove and chotielaichi. (These whole spices add fragrance to our biryani)

Fry onions till they are golden brown in colour. Once the onions turn golden brown add ginger and garlic paste, stir well and add tomatoes, green chillies, dhaniya powder, garam masala and salt.

Mix well and allow it to cook for a few minutes. Add the chicken from the yakhni we boiled to the masala, add curd.

Add the Yakhni to the masala and mix everything with a light hand.

Add the soaked rice in the Yakhni, cover the lid and give it a boil.

Place the biryani utensil on a tawa so that the rice doesn't burn at the base. Allow it to cook for some time on low flame.

For fragrance and colour, we will take 2-3 elaichis and yellow food colour, mix it with keora water and once the biryani is cooked, add this to the biryani and cover the lid immediately.

Fry the chopped onions in desi ghee and fry till golden brown. Add tadka to the biryani and we're done. Serve Hot!

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