Here is yet another chicken dish...such an easy protein to work with and healthy too. Do you love a good curry? When it is done properly, to me there is nothing better in the whole wide wide world. Chicken Biryani is a dish I used to make years ago and somehow forgot along the way? How that happened I will never know. The lovely thing about curries is the layering...the layering of spices, textures and flavors - that is what makes a great curry. The other thing I have learned about curries - if you are feeling a bit under the weather, all of the spices here give you a boost - a boost to the immune system as well as to your overall energy. Yup, curries are the answer!
Now with this dish it was not your typical Biryani. Yes I did use a Biryani spice blend you can find here. That said, I also included a Madras Curry spice blend I adore. Any good quality Madras Curry blend will work nicely - a great compliment to the Biryani spice blend. Again, another layer of flavor. The saffron is an absolute must in this dish, it will not be the same without it. Such a beautiful spice!
Typically, a Biryani is made with yogurt, meat, and your seasoning blend. Here I used skinless, boneless chicken breasts, but chicken thighs would be lovely as would a good cut of beef. In terms of salt, use at your discretion - salt to suite your taste.
2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 tsp. Biryani Spice Blend
2 tsp. Madras Curry Spice
1/4 juice of a fresh lemon
1 heaping Tblsp. finely chopped ginger
3/4 cup Lactose Free/full fat Greek Yogurt
Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl mixing well to coat and marinate in the fridge 4-12 hours.
1 cup basmati rice - well rinsed under cold water in a sieve
2 Tblsp. Avocado oil
2 cups water
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
pinch of saffron
1/2 a large onion sliced into 2 inch pieces
1 large organic Yukon gold potato, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 tsp. garam masala
1/2 tsp. madras curry powder
1 tsp. tumeric
1/2 cup Lactose free full fat Greek yogurt
pinch of saffron
3/4 cup chicken stock
2 Tblsp. Ghee or butter
fresh chopped cilantro
To the potatoes, add the spices - garam masala, madras curry powder, tumeric and saffron , and yogurt, mix well and set aside. Begin by heating a dutch oven with the butter or Ghee on low/medium heat. Add in the chopped onion and saute until golden - about 12 minutes, season with salt. Add the chicken stock, marinated potatoes, and chicken with the yogurt marinade. Bring to a lite simmer lid off, stirring occasionally. Cook about 20-25 min. until the potatoes and chicken are cooked through...check for salt and adjust if necessary. While this is beginning to cook, start on the rice.
Add the Avocado oil to a pot on medium heat. Add the spices and bay leaves, then the rice and saute about 2-3 minutes until nice and fragrant. Pour in the water and bring to a simmer. Turn down to minimum heat, lid on and cook about 20 min.
Once the rice is cooked, remove the bay leaves, and stir with a fork to combine. Transfer to a baking dish and top with the chicken/potato curry, mixing to blend. Serve with a fresh helping of cilantro.