It was almost noon when I realized that I had spent whole morning looking at old albums. Sometimes I have to remind myself where I am. Sitting on my bed surrounded by hundreds of pictures, I was more calmed and relaxed than I usually am. Beautiful old memories have casted a spell on me…. I glanced at the clock once again and quickly jumped out of my bed. As I headed towards the kitchen still thinking what to fix for lunch fast for my soon to be dramatically hungry family, I remembered the Egg Biryani, one of the master piece of my dad culinary repertoire…
My dad is an intensely private man with a huge passion for everything food. From exotic curries to humble scramble, each and every of his dish is an extraordinaire affair. His rhythm and passion when he is around food is a sheer delight to watch, I get my share of passion and love for food from him. Out of many of his delicious dishes Biryani’s always takes an important place.
Biryani’s are rice based Mughlai dishes made by layering cooked rice with cooked/marinated vegetables, meat, poultry, seafood or any filling of the choice. Even though Biryanis’s are considered as one of the most elaborate preparation with layers of fascinating flavors, they are very easy to put together. I find them very similar to Lasagna in technique. For todays recipe I am using Egg Curry as my filling, this is such a wonderful recipe. Perfect for any day of the week or that special night when you want to wow everyone with your food.
- Eggs – 6, hard boiled and halved.
- Rice Basmati – 1 ½ cup, washed.
- Peas - frozen/fresh 1/2 cup.
- Onion – 1 medium, finely chopped.
- Tomatoes – 2, finely chopped.
- Garlic paste – 1 tsp.
- Ginger paste – 1 tsp.
- Cinnamon stick – 1
- Bay leaf – 1
- Black peppercorns- 6-8
- Cloves – 4
- Cumin seeds – ½ tsp.
- Coriander powder – 1 Tbsp.
- Paprika – ½ tsp.
- Turmeric – ¼ tsp.
- Saffron – few strands or a pinch soaked in 2Tbsp of milk for few minutes. (optional)
- Cilantro chopped – ½ cup
- Ginger – 1 inch julienned.
- Salt to taste.
- Oil – 2Tbsp + 1Tbsp.
- Water – 4 cups.
- Put washed rice, water, cinnamon stick and ½ tsp of salt in a large nonstick saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook the rice uncovered until most of the water has been absorbed and the rice is 90% done. Remove from the heat, drain the excess water I and keep the rice covered aside.
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease a large baking dish.
- Heat 2Tbsp of oil in a nonstick pan. Add the bay leaf, cumin seeds, black peppercorns, cloves and chopped onions and sauté them till onions are browned.
- Once the onions are browned add ginger and garlic paste along with turmeric powder, paprika, coriander powder and sauté for 3- 4 minutes. Finally add the chopped tomatoes and salt. Cook on medium heat covered till the tomatoes are all soft and broken down and the oil start to show on the surface, about 10 minutes. Now add the peas and cook for another minute or so. Make sure to keep stirring to avoid the mixture from burning.
- Once the tomato mixture is well done, add half of the chopped cilantro, mix. Now carefully add the halved eggs and gently fold them into the mixture. Remove from the heat.
- Now in the greased baking dish, spread half of the cooked rice, on top of the rice gently spread the egg filling. Be careful not to break the eggs. Sprinkle the julienned ginger over it and top with the remaining rice. Drizzle the saffron milk and 1Tbsp of oil over the rice and add the remaining chopped cilantro.
- Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake for 25-30 minutes.
- Serve Hot ..Enjoy!!