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

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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