For veggie version substitute paneer instead of chicken.
Serves - 4
Cooking time - 40 - 50 minutes
For marinating the chicken
Fennel seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Cumin seeds - 1/4 teaspoon
Coriander seeds - 1/4 teaspoon
Dried red chilies - 2
cloves - 3
Cinnamon - 1 1inch stick
Green cardamom - 4
Black cardamom - 1
Anaardana powder - 1/2 teaspoon
For the masala
Chicken - 500 gms ( dark meat tastes better)
Yoghurt - 1 cup ( beaten well)
Kashmiri chili powder - 3 teaspoon ( adjust according to heat and desired color)
Red onion - 1 large ( finely chopped )
Ginger - garlic paste - 1 tablespoon
Tomatoes - 2 (medium) ( finely chopped)
Tumeric powder - 1/2 teaspoon
Coriander powder - 1teaspoon
salt - to taste
Oil - 3 tablespoons
For the vegetables
Carrots - 1/2 cup grated
Green beans - 1/2 cup ( 1/2 inch pieces cut diagonally)
Long grain basmati rice - 2 cup
water - 4 cups ( or as per instructions)
Salt - 1 teaspoon
ghee - 1 teaspoon
Fried onion slices
Chopped coriander leaves
Chopped mint leaves
Cashew nuts and raisins fried in ghee
Few strands of saffron soaked in warm milk or water
1. Take all the marinade spices and lightly toast them in a dry skillet. Cool it and coarsely grind.
2. Combine these spices with the yogurt and salt and kashmiri chilli powder to form a marinade. Marinate chicken pieces in this for a minimum of 4 hours.
3. Then heat oil in a pan and fry the chopped onions till they are slightly brown.
4. Add ginger garlic paste and continue frying for 2 - 3 more minutes.
5. Add chopped tomatoes and roast well.
6. Now add the chicken pieces along with the marinade, mix well and fry for 3 -5 minutes.
7. Add all the other spices and 1 tablespoon of water and stir well. Reduce the heat a bit, so as to infuse the chicken with all the spices
8. When the chicken is almost done, remove from fire, The chicken mixture should be having a little bit of gravy.
9. Wash and soak the rice for 30 minutes. Bring the water to boil and add the soaked rice along with salt and ghee and cook till its 90% done.
10. In 1 tsp oil sauté the vegetables for 5-6 minutes till tender crisp. No need to add any spices or salt. Keep aside.
11. Preheat the oven at 375 Fahrenheit.
12. In a large greased casserole, start layering. Layer half the rice at the bottom. Top with half the fried cashew nuts and raisins, followed by half the fried onions and half of the prepared vegetables, mint and coriander. Sprinkle saffron water randomly over the rice. Top with half the chicken. Now repeat the layers again.
13. Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes till rice cooks completely.
Serve warm with cucumber raita.