Prawns Biriyani

First things first, before going to anything else, let me tell you this… this recipe looks quite lengthy and time consuming. But, I tell you, it's not so time consuming and difficult recipe. Trust me!

It's an easy one, but since it's a biriyani recipe, it has many steps, hence the detailed and lengthy recipe. Also, let me assure you, it's worth the time and effort, it's one flavour packed biriyani!

Now, that's out of the way, we will get to other things. So, we are having quite a long weekend here in Bahrain and I guess in most of the Gulf countries too, on account of Eid celebrations. It's a double bonus for Malayalees, since we get to celebrate Onam in all it's glory during the holidays.

I see many a Biriyani and Sadya lunches in the coming days ;) Since Eid is coming before Onam, I thought I'll share this wonderful Prawns Biriyani recipe with you. Yes, I've posted another Prawns Biriyani recipe earlier. It's quite different from this one. In that Prawns is fried and cooked, here it's cooked in the masala itself.

Also, the masala of these biriyanis are quite different. This is a very rich masala compared to the other one. Also, I think, in this recipe, you can substitute Prawns with chicken. This masala has a very “meaty” taste, if you know what I mean ;)

Hope you get to try this delicious biriyani. I'm sure you'll enjoy this. I got this lovely recipe from my friend Smitha. As always, thank you so much Smitha, for sharing this recipe :)

Eid Mubarak to you and your loved ones!

You can see other Biriyani recipes here and some Eid recipes here. If you are looking for Onam recipes, you can find it here.

Here is the recipe…

Grind together chopped mint and coriander leaves (1/3 cup each), yogurt and soaked cashew nuts (after draining) to a smooth paste. Keep aside…

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Heat 1 tbsp ghee and 2 tbsp oil in a deep and wide pan. Add the whole spices listed under Prawns Masala (Cinnamon – Bay leaf). Add sliced onion (5). Cook till it becomes brown…

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Add crushed ginger, garlic and green chilli. Cook till the raw smell goes, 3-4 mins…

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Add all masala powders (from chilli powder – garam masala). Fry for 2-3 mins, till oil starts appearing…

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Add yogurt paste. Cook for 4-5 mins…

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Add chopped tomatoes. Cook till it becomes soft…

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Add salt and cleaned prawns. Mix well. Cover and cook, till prawns is done and water is dried (12-15 mins). No need to add water while cooking prawns…

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Heat ghee in a wide and deep pan. Add whole spices listed under “for rice” (from cardamom – cinnamon). Add chopped onion and cook till it becomes soft, no need to brown it…

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Add Crushed ginger & garlic. Cook for 3-4 mins…

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Add rice and salt and gently mix. Fry the rice for 3-4 mins. Add water and lemon juice. Bring to boil. Simmer and cook till rice is done and water is dried…

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Grease a deep and wide oven proof dish with ghee. Spread a layer of rice, sprinkle chopped mint and coriander , fried onions (optional) and drizzle some ghee on top of it. Spread a layer of prawns masala, followed by rice and toppings (mint, coriander leaves & fried onion). Repeat the layering process, until the rice and masala is used completely. The top layer has to be rice. Put a wet kitchen towel on the top layer. Cover it with a tight lid…

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Preheat oven to 200 C, 10 mins before baking. Bake in the pre heated oven for 20 mins. Take out of oven and let rest for another 10 mins. Open and serve. Garnish with fried onion, cashew nuts, mint and coriander leaves…

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Prawns Biriyani

Print Pin
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Indian, Kerala, South Indian
Servings: 5
Author: Maria Jose Martin

Ingredients

  • 500-550 gms Prawns (measured after cleaning)
  • 5 med-large Onion (sliced)
  • 2 tbsp Crushed ginger & garlic (each)
  • 5 Crushed green chilli
  • 2 tsp Chilli powder
  • 3 tsp Coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp Fennel powder
  • 1/2 tsp Garam masala
  • 1/3 cup Chopped mint & coriander leaves (each)
  • 8 Cashew nuts (soaked in warm water for 10 mins)
  • 2 tbsp Yogurt
  • 2 med -big Tomato (chopped)
  • 2 small pieces Cinnamon
  • 4 Cardamom
  • 4 Cloves
  • 1/2 tsp Black pepper corns
  • a pinch Fennel seeds
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • Salt
  • 1 tbsp Ghee
  • 2 tbsp Oil (I used sunflower oil)

For Rice

  • 2.5 cups Basmati Rice
  • 4 Cardamom
  • 4 Cloves
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1 small piece Cinnamon
  • 1 med – big Onion (chopped)
  • 1 tbsp Crushed ginger & garlic (each)
  • 3 tbsp Ghee
  • 1.5 tbsp Lemon juice
  • 4.5 cups Water
  • Salt
  • Garnishing
  • 1 big Fried onion
  • 1/2 cup Chopped coriander and mint leaves (each)
  • 10-12 Fried cashew nuts

Instructions

  • For Prawns Masala
  • Grind together chopped mint and coriander leaves (1/3 cup each), yogurt and soaked cashew nuts (after draining) to a smooth paste. keep aside.
  • Heat 1 tbsp ghee and 2 tbsp oil in a deep and wide pan. Add the whole spices listed under Prawns Masala (Cinnamon – Bay leaf)
  • Add sliced onion (5). Cook till it becomes brown. Add crushed ginger, garlic and green chilli. Cook till the raw smell goes, 3-4 mins. Add all masala powders (from chilli powder – garam masala). Fry for 2-3 mins, till oil starts appearing.
  • Add yogurt paste. Cook for 4-5 mins. Add chopped tomatoes. Cook till it becomes soft. Add salt and cleaned prawns. Mix well.
  • Cover and cook, till prawns is done and water is dried (12-15 mins). No need to add water while cooking prawns. Water will be released from the prawns.
  • Rice Preparation:
  • Rinse the rice under running water 3-4 times. Heat ghee in a wide and deep pan. Add whole spices listed under “for rice” (from cardamom – cinnamon).
  • Add chopped onion and cook till it becomes soft, no need to brown it. Add Crushed ginger & garlic. Cook for 3-4 mins. Add rice and salt and gently mix. Fry the rice for 3-4 mins. Add water and lemon juice. Bring to boil.
  • Simmer and cook till rice is done and water is dried. Refer notes for detailed instructions.
  • Layering the biriyani:
  • Grease a deep and wide oven proof dish with ghee. Spread a layer of rice, sprinkle chopped mint and coriander , fried onions (optional) and drizzle some ghee on top of it. Spread a layer of prawns masala, followed by rice and toppings (mint, coriander leaves, ghee & fried onion). Repeat the layering process, until the rice and masala is used completely. The top layer has to be rice. Put a wet kitchen towel on the top layer. Cover it with a tight lid.
  • Preheat oven to 200 C, 10 mins before baking. Bake in the pre heated oven for 20 mins. Take out of oven and let rest for another 10 mins. Open and serve. Garnish with fried onion, cashew nuts, mint and coriander leaves.
  • If you dont have an oven, check out the “notes” section here to see, how to finish cooking biriyani on stovetop.

Notes

Cooking of rice: Though the usual ratio of rice to water is 1:2, I find it works better when I add 1/2 cup less than the required qty. Here for 2.5 cups of rice, I used 4.5 cups of water instead of 5.
Also, once the rice is cooked, I spread it out on a big tray and cool it before layering. I find that it helps the rice from getting overcooked or mashed up during baking.
If you are cooking this for a party, you can make the prawns masala 1-2 days in advance and refrigerate.
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