You are here

Kacchi Biryani

Kacchi Biryani literally means ‘raw biryani’ and is also known as ‘Kacchi Yeqni’ since the unique feature of this preparation is that the raw meat and the rice are cooked collectively in steam. This is unlike other biryanis where the two are cooked separately and then assembled together. Goat meat is most often used. Sometimes lamb, beef, and infrequently chicken are also used. This is a famous product of Dhaka in Bangladesh and there is a Hyderabadi version very popular in the Indian sub-continent.

Ingredients and Preparation

High quality basmati rice, meat/lamb, clarified butter (ghee), whole spices - Cardamoms, Cloves, Black Peppercorns, Cumin, Cinnamon Stick, Bay Leaves, Dry Indian spice powders such as Red Chilli Powder, Turmeric, Coriander, Garam Masala powders, onions, potatoes, ginger-garlic paste, lemon juice, yoghurt, raw papaya paste and saffron strands soaked in warm milk are needed.

Mutton/lamb needs an overnight marination in spice powders, yoghurt, papaya paste, ginger garlic paste and salt. Half done rice is layered over the marinated meat in a large pot. Over the rice, some clarified butter, saffron milk, fried potatoes and onions are placed. After repeating this arrangement again, the lid is tightly sealed and the Kacchi Biryani is cooked briefly (10-15 minutes) over high flame and then simmered on slow flame for another 30 – 45 minutes till aroma permeates through the air.

Note: Marination of the lamb/meat is one of the most crucial steps in preparing the Kacchi ghosht ki Biryani. Raw mashed papaya, along with yogurt, ginger garlic paste, cardamom and other aromatic spices as well as lemon juice is used as the marinade, for at least 3 to 4 hours or overnight. These ingredients help not only to tenderize meat but also to infuse exceptional flavours deep into the multiple layers of meat. Papain, the enzyme in papaya, is activated on exposure to heat while cooking and causes breakdown of connective tissues, thereby tenderizing the meat.

Nutritive Value

A serving size of about 1 cup ~100 g of Kacchi Biryani supplies-

• 294.1 calories, with 169.3 calories from fat.

• Total fat 18.7 g, saturated fat 3.2 g, cholesterol 95.8 mg.

• Sodium 515 mg

• Total carbohydrate 23.8 g, dietary fibre 0.6 g.

• Protein 7.2 g

• Estimated percentage of calories from fat is 21.7 %, from carbohydrates is 48.5 % and from protein is 29.8 %.

Nutritional Enhancements

1. Evidently the fat content of the kacchi biryani proves to be a hindrance to its intake, hence only lean meat should be employed in making this biryani to control total, saturated fats and cholesterol intake. Instead of clarified butter, using smaller amounts of sunflower, corn or rice bran oils could reduce the total calorific value of the dish and at the same time include some unsaturated fats.

2. For a vegetarian, a healthy alternative would be the use of raw jackfruit to prepare a kathal biryani following the same procedure as the kacchi biryani. Raw jackfruit supplies phytonutrients, isoflavone compounds and antioxidants that have anti-cancer benefits. It is also believed to improve digestion, and bowel clearance owing to the high fibre content. A good source of potassium and Vitamin C, A, B and minerals like calcium, phosphorus and zinc, it is beneficial to persons with stomach ulcers and abnormal blood pressure.