Paneer Biryani Recipe – is a treat for the vegetarians. This Biryani is delicious, tossed with Indian spices, herbs and the soft succulent pieces of paneer. I have made this biryani similar to the lines of Hyderabadi Biryani recipe.
We make biryani of many type at home. I am yet to post the vegetable biryani recipe. The only challenge is if you overcook the paneer it tend to be rubbery and hard. So if you adding paneer then you have to cook them the least. Don’t worry I have taken care of this part and the biryani comes out with soft paneer.
You could make a dum biryani by giving dum. For people who don’t know what is dum?? The biryani is cooked with sealed edges. The dough is wrapped around the periphery of the vessel and covered with a lid. Then the rice is cooked on slow fire without the air coming out from the vessel. This process of cooking biryani is called dum wherein no air is allowed to escape.
I mostly cover biryani with a lid then keep a heavy vessel or grinding stone over it. This is my way of cooking biryani giving a dum effect. You could say this is a lazy, easy and convenient way of cooking. Also, I place a big fat tava (pan) and place the biryani vessel over it. This helps in biryani not getting stuck to the bottom.
People also make biryani in a pressure cooker, pans, baking in the oven etc. You could make the way you find it easier for you. In Indian many types of biryani’s are made like chicken biryani, kumbh (mushroom) biryani, egg biryani, vegetable biryani and also keema biryani.
Also biryanis are loved by Indian’s. Mostly in all restaurant’s you would find biryani listed on their menu. In-fact there are some joints which are specialized only in various kind of biryani’s listed on their menu.
How to make Paneer Biryani recipe and the recipe cart below:
- 400 gms paneer chopped into lengthwise or cubes
- 4 tbsp yogurt
- 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
- 1 t/s red chili powder
- 1 t/s coriander powder
- 1 t/s garam masala powder
- a pinch of mango powder (amchur)
- 1 t/s sugar
- 2 tbsp gram flour (besan)
- salt as per taste
- 500 gms basmati rice soaked in water
- 2 tbsp oil + 2 tbsp ghee (clarified butter)
- 500 gm onion chopped into julienne
- 250 gm tomato chopped
- 2 potatoes chopped lengthwise (parboiled or shallow fried)
- 250 gm yogurt
- 2 bayleaves
- 2-3 cloves
- 4-5 peppercorn
- 2-3 green cardamom
- 2 black cardamom
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 mace
- 1 tbsp caraway seed
- 1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
- 1 tbsp biryani masala ( I used shaan brand you could use anyone)
- 1 tbsp red chili powder or as required
- ½ tbsp coriander seed powder
- 5-6 mint leaves
- 2-3 green chilies
- ½ cup of coriander leaves
- 2 tbsp of fresh coconut grated (optional)
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- few strands of saffron dissolved in hot water or few drops of orange food color
- 1 tbsp kewra water
- salt as per taste
- 2-3 onion chopped into julienne
- few coriander leaves
- few mint leaves
- 20 cashew fried (optional)
- Marinate the paneer pieces with all the ingredients mentioned for marination. Keep it aside for 20 mins.
- In the meanwhile, we will make rice. First, take a big wok or vessel. Add water with few spices ( bayleaf, 2 inch cinnamon stick, green Cardamom, mace, cloves,pepper corn). Boil the water with all these whole garam masala. Take water as required to make the basmati rice.
- Please note you just have to par boil the rice (half cook). Don't cook the rice completely. Remove from fire once the rice is half cooked.
- Strain the water and keep the rice aside.
- Take some oil in a pan and fry the chopped onion until dark brown and crispy. Chop coriander leaves and keep it aside. Also in the same oil fry the cashews for a minute. Keep all aside.
- In the same pan add some more oil. Shallow fry the paneer until cooked and fried from both the sides. Don't fry them too much else paneer would get rubbery. Place it aside.
- Grind Mint Leaves, Green Chilies, grated coconut and Coriander leaves in the processor.
- Add a little water if requires. Keep this green paste aside.
- Please keep the gas flame on low mode. Now take a big wok or vessel.
- Add ghee to it.
- Saute 3 Bay leaves, shahi jeera, rest of cloves, pepper corn, cinnamon and green cardamom.
- After about 2 mins add chopped Onion to it. Fry them until they are dark brown in color but on low flame.
- Now add ginger garlic paste to it. Stir for some time.
- Add the green paste as well. Stir for a minute more. Now add shaan biryani garam masala, coriander seed powder, turmeric, red chili powder. Combine all of them well. It is time to add tomatoes and few coriander leaves.
- Saute tomatoes for 1 more minute.
- Add yogurt and combine all of them well. Let it cook for a minute.
- Put par-boiled or fried potatoes to them. Let it again cook for a minute more. Allow to cook until gravy bubbles. Switch off the gas.
- Now we will arrange layers for the biryani. Take another big vessel.
- Now add half of the above gravy to it.
- Gently spread half of the par boiled rice to it. Sprinkle some saffron mixed with warm milk Or if using food color to the rice along with some ghee on it. Do add some mint leaves and coriander leaves too.
- Now again spread the rest of gravy on the rice.
- Finally spread the rest of par boiled rice on it. Again top the rice with ghee and rest of saffron mixed with warm milk or food color. Add the fried cashewnuts, mint leaves, coriander leaves, drops of kewra essence all over and also the fried onion.
- Place it on low heat. Keep a large heavy bottomed tava or pan on the gas. Now place the stacked layers of biryani vessel on the heavy bottomed pan .
- Now cover with a lid. Also you could cover with dough covering the edges of the vessel. But We have chosen to cover with a lid and then placing a grinding stone on it. If you don't have a grinding stone you could place any heavy object which is fire proof on the lid. This process is important to give dum (pressure) to the biryani. keep it on low mode for the entire process of making Biryani.
- Roughly about 20 -25 mins your Biryani is ready. Remove the lid and spread the shallow fried paneer all over the biryani on top. Cover again with the lid and some weight over it.
- Switch off the gas. Serve the paneer biryani hot with salad or raita.
- Garnish your Paneer Biryani with coriander leaves and lime wedges.
2. Alternatively, you could add paneer to the gravy but there are chances they might get overcooked in the process and taste rubbery.
3. Also, I have used fried potatoes as it would reduce the time for my biryani. So either fry the potatoes or parboil and then add to the biryani.
4. If you don't have saffron then you could add some food color. Please don't cook in haste. Make it patiently it's worth the effort.