Special Mutton Biriyani – Kerala Style

Mutton Biriyani

Ingredients (Serves 6 – 8)

1. Mutton – 1 – 1.25 kg, cut into medium-small pieces

Yoghurt – 3 tbsp

Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp

Pepper powder – 1/2 tsp

Garam masala powder – 3/4 tsp

Salt – To taste

2. Ghee / coconut oil – Around 5 – 6 tbsp

3. Onion – 2 medium-large, roughly chopped and coarse ground (Coarse grind it just before using otherwise it may turn bitter)

Ginger – 1 inch, roughly chopped

Garlic –  7 – 8 large cloves, roughly chopped

Green chilies – 8 – 10, chopped

Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp

Garam masala powder – 2 – 3 tsp or to taste (Recipe below)

Tomato – 2 small, grated or coarse ground

Yoghurt – 2 tbsp

4. Mint leaves – 3 tbsp, chopped

Cilantro – 3 tbsp, chopped

5. Salt – To taste

6. Garam masala powder – 1/4 tsp or to taste

For the rice

7. Jeerakashala rice / kaima rice – 3 cups

   Ghee – 2 tbsp

   Whole spices – Fennel seeds – 1/4 tsp, Cardamom – 5 – 6, cinnamon stick – 1 inch, cloves – 8, whole black pepper corns – 1/4 tsp, cinnamon stick – 1 inch, broken

    Hot water – 6 cups (For 1 cup rice, use 2 cups of water. Some varieties of biriyani/ kaima rice may need only 1.5 cup water)

   Salt – To taste

To garnish

9. Fried onion – 1/2 + 1/2 cup

   Fried cashews – 1/4 cup

   Fried raisins – 1/4 cup

   Mint leaves – 1/2 cup, chopped

   Cilantro – 1/2 cup, chopped

Saffron – 1 pinch dissolved in 2 tbsp hot water / milk

Garam masala powder – 1 –  2 pinches

   Ghee – 1 – 2 tsp

For the garam masala powder

   Fennel seeds – 2 tbsp

   Cloves – 10

   Cardamom – 10

   Whole black pepper corn – 1/2 tsp

   Cinnamon stick – 1/2 inch

   Kus kus – 1 tsp (optional)

     Grind all the above ingredients to a fine powder. You need only 1 – 1.5 tbsp garam masala powder for this recipe. Store the remaining in an air tight container)


1. Marinate the mutton pieces with the remaining ingredients numbered  1 for at least 30 minutes or overnight in the refrigerator. Take it out of the refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking.

3. Heat 5 – 6 tbsp ghee in a heavy-bottomed vessel. Add all the ingredients numbered 3 and enough salt. Cook for at least 1 hour stirring in between, until it turns brown. Add 1/4 cup chopped cilantro and mint. Mix well. Add the mutton pieces and 1/2 cup fried onion. Cook for 6 – 7 minutes. Add 1/2 cup hot water and mix well. Transfer this to a pressure cooker. Cook for 4 – 5 whistles until the mutton pieces turn soft. Reserve 3/4 – 1 cup of the gravy (use this while cooking rice to give an extra flavor to the rice).

3. To cook biriyani rice – Rinse and soak rice in enough water for 30 minutes. Drain well. Heat 3 tbsp ghee in a heavy-bottomed pan or a large 5 or 6 liter pressure cooker. Add the whole spices and stir until fragrant. Add drained rice and fry for a minute. Add 5 cups of hot water and 1 cup beef stock/gravy that you reserved before. Bring to a boil and taste-check for salt. The water should be slightly salty. Cover with lid and cook until steam starts coming out profusely (if you are using a cooker). Put the cooker weight and cook for 2 – 3 minutes over low heat. Switch off. Open the lid after 10 – 15 minutes. The rice will be perfectly done. Fluff the rice gently using a fork.

4. To layer –  In a heavy-bottomed vessel smeared with ghee, spread half of the  cooked mutton masala at the bottom. Top it with 1/4 cup chopped mint and cilantro. Top it with half of the cooked ghee rice. Sprinkle fried onion, cashews, raisins, chopped mint, cilantro and a pinch of garam masala powder. Spread the remaining mutton masala on top followed by remaining ghee rice. Sprinkle fried onion, a pinch of garam masala powder or biriyani masala powder, fried cashews, raisins, chopped mint, cilantro, saffron milk and 2-3 tsp melted ghee. Cover tightly with an aluminium foil. Bake at 400 F for 15 – 20 minutes. OR Heat a large tawa over medium-high heat. Once hot, bring down the heat to low. Place the biriyani pot on top of the tawa. Cook over medium heat for 4 minutes. Bring down the heat to low and cook for 5 minutes. Switch off. Let it rest unopened for another 10 – 15 minutes in the biriyani pot. Serve hot with raita, boiled eggs, biriyani chammanthi, pappadam and lemon pickle.

Adapted from here

Special mutton biriyani

Maya Akhil

Wife, Mother, Blogger and above all, an ardent lover of good food. I cook, serve, and eat with almost the same passion. The divine aroma that fills the kitchen when I cook or bake is simply what keeps me going!

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About Maya

Maya Akhil

Wife, Mother, Blogger and above all, an ardent lover of good food. I cook, serve, and eat with almost the same passion. The divine aroma that fills the kitchen when I cook or bake is simply what keeps me going!

Every Recipe Since 2010