Ingredients (Serves 3 )
1. Basmati rice – 1.5 cups
2. Carrot – 2 small, diced (Try to use fresh veggies for this biriyani)
Green beans – 1/2 cup, cut into 3/4 inch pieces
Fresh / frozen green peas – 1/4 cup
Bell pepper, green and red – 1/4 cup, diced (optional)
3. Ghee / Oil – 1.5 tbsp
4. Whole spices – Cardamom – 2, whole pepper corns – 4, cinnamon stick – 1/2 inch, cloves – 5
5. Cashews – 2 tbsp
6. Onion – 1/2 medium, thinly sliced and halved
Ginger-garlic paste – 1.5 tsp
7. Mint leaves – 20 – 25 or 1/4 cup
Cilantro – 1/4 cup
Green chilies – 2, halved
Lemon juice – 1/2 tsp
8. Garam masala powder – 1/2 – 3/4 tsp
9. Hot water – 2 cups and thick coconut milk – 1/4 cup ( You can use 2 1/4 cup thin coconut milk instead)
10. Salt To taste
1. Soak basmati rice for 20 minutes in enough water. Drain and set aside.
2. Grind mint leaves, cilantro, green chilies and lemon juice to a coarse mixture.
3. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pressure cooker (I used a 5 litre pressure cooker). Add whole spices and stir until fragrant. Add cashews and stir until golden. Next add sliced onion and ginger-garlic paste. Saute until onion turns transparent and raw smell of ginger-garlic paste is gone. Add ground cilantro-mint-green chilly mixture. Saute for 1 minute. Add garam masala powder, carrot, beans and salt. Saute for a minute. Next add bell peppers and green peas and saute for a minute.
4. Add drained basmati rice. Mix well and stir everything for another minute. Add hot water and coconut milk. Mix well. Adjust salt. Close the pressure-cooker with its lid. Cook at medium heat until steam starts coming out. Place the weight on top and bring down the heat to medium-low. Cook for 5 minutes. Switch off. Open the pressure-cooker when pressure releases or after 10 – 15 minutes. Vegetable biriyani will be perfectly done. Fluff rice with a fork, mix everything carefully and transfer to a serving bowl. Garnish with fried onion, raisins, chopped mint and cilantro etc. Enjoy this delicious vegetable biriyani with raita, pickle and pappad.
You can also add soy chunks, paneer and other veggies like potato, corn etc. For 1 cup basmati rice, you need 1.5 cup water or thin coconut milk. If you are using 2 cups of rice , use 3 cups of hot water or thin coconut milk. Coconut milk is an added for an extra taste and flavor, you can avoid it if you want.