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Sindhi Biryani

Sindhi Biryani is a traditional aromatic rice based preparation belonging to the Sindh region in Pakistan and is made using special meat. The taste of this dish is greatly valued, so much so that it forms one of the most sought after dishes in Pakistani and more specifically Sindhi cuisines.

Ingredients and Preparation

Boneless mutton, Basmati or long-grain rice, potatoes, onions, tomatoes, 4 whole green chillies, dry spice powder - red chili and garam masala powders, whole spices including cinnamon sticks, cardamoms, cloves, peppercorns, ginger-garlic paste, beaten yogurt, saffron (soaked in milk), oil or butter, vinegar, coriander leaves, dry plums (softened by soaking in warm water) and salt are the major ingredients.

In a large pan, whole spices are fried in heated oil or butter, followed by sliced onions until golden brown. Green chillies and ginger-garlic paste are then fried; salt and dry spice powders are added and fried well. Mutton pieces are added and mixed well. Blended yoghurt is poured in next. Little water may be added to cook mutton till tender (3/4th done). Cubed potatoes, tomatoes and plums are added and cooked. Rice is prepared (till 3/4th done) in a separate pan after frying with whole spices in oil. Salt and little vinegar is added.

Since Sindhi Cuisine also follows the ‘dum pukht’ process of steam cooking biryani, the flavoured rice and prepared mutton pieces in gravy are layered in a heavy-bottomed pan and drizzled with saffron milk. This is sealed properly before heating on medium flame until rice and meat are completely cooked in the steam.

Nutrition Information

A serving size of 1 plate approximately 220 g provides-

• Total of 509.4 calories, with 246 calories from fat.

• Total fat 27.3 g, saturated fat 6.4 g, cholesterol 49.6 mg.

• Sodium 639.9 mg.

• Total carbohydrate 48.9 g, dietary fibre 3.6 g, sugars 5.0 g and remainder constituting other carbohydrate components.

• Protein 18.4 g.

• The dish also supplies reasonable amounts of phosphorus, potassium, folate and Vitamin A.

Nutritional Enhancement

• Use of poppy seeds soaked in warm water and then made paste, deliver many antioxidant, health promoting and disease preventing properties. Oleic acid, the monounsaturated fatty acid in it, fights LDL- the bad cholesterol and enhances the good cholesterol i.e. HDL. Poppy seeds also provide fibre that helps in bowel clearance and cholesterol, blood glucose and weight control. Iron, Calcium, Magnesium, copper, manganese and zinc are some of the minerals contained in poppy seeds.

• Chicken may be used to replace mutton in the Sindhi Biryani recipe to supply lesser number of calories and reduce the total and saturated fat and cholesterol content.

• For diabetics and overweight persons brown rice would be a healthier way of introducing B-vitamins and fibre into the dish.