Lunch / Dinner
Chicken Biryani with Peas & Raisins
This 30-minute biryani is a must-try for Indian-food lovers. If you’re new to the cuisine, there’s nothing to shy away from here — it’s basically chicken and rice.
Biryani [beer-YAH-nee] is one of those dishes that you can tell is full of flavor just by looking at it. It’s a popular Indian and Pakistani rice dish that includes herbs, spices, veggies, and often meat. Amazingly enough, you can make this version (with precooked chicken) in just a half hour!
Start with the traditional choice of rice — basmati. This long-grain rice has a perfumy fragrance and nutty flavor. It cooks up lighter and drier than other varieties, which keeps this dish from becoming heavy.
After lightly toasting the rice, give it the color and flavor you expect from Indian cuisine with the addition of turmeric, as well as garam masala, ginger, and garlic. Serrano chiles provide heat, but golden raisins balance it with a bit of sweetness. Stir in peas and cilantro at the end of cooking so they don’t lose their color.
Test Kitchen Tips
Serranos are one of the most commonly available hot chiles. If you’re sensitive to spicy foods, scrape out the seeds and membranes with a paring knife.
Garam masala is a blend of dry-roasted spices often used in Indian cooking. It can include black pepper, cinnamon, cloves, cumin, coriander, cardamom, dried chiles, mace, and nutmeg.
Sauté rice in oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until beginning to brown. Stir in onion, ginger, garlic, minced serrano, garam masala, and turmeric and sauté until fragrant, 1–2 minutes. Stir in broth, chicken, and raisins and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook until rice is tender, 15–20 minutes. Remove skillet from heat.
Bring flavor to the rice and keep the grains separate by sautéing it in oil until it smells nutty.
For pungent flavor and intense color, don’t skip the turmeric. It’s prized for medicinal properties, too.
Add golden raisins for their sweetness. It balances the spiciness of the serrano chiles and spices.
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 8g 12%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 51mg 17%
Sodium 131mg 5%
Carbs 70g 23%
Fiber 4g 16%
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.