The exquisite cuisine is originated from South Asia, and it has been satiating the hunger of many for centuries. India has witnessed numerous invaders, with each intruder there came a different culture and cuisine.
And just like that, the attackers brought several recipes to India like Biryani. Even though it is said that the Mughals have bought biryani, there is some historical evidence to show that other alike dishes before the Mughal invasion in India.
However, tho doubt that Islamic Persians inspired this dish. The word Biryani means “Fried before cooking” which comes from the Persian word birian. One story concluded that it is originated from Mumtaz Mahal, Shah Jahan’s queen who inspired the Taj Mahal. Once, she visited army barracks and they provide her with balanced nutrition and hence biryani was created.
As its connection goes back to the royal courts, the dish is reserved for the most special of the occasion. The Mughal Emperors used to enjoy these staple Indian food recipes to suit their royalty.
A peek inside Biryani the Royal Dish:
Primarily, the rice was fried in ghee or butter and cooked in boiling water. The frying process gave the rice a nutty flavor forming a layer around each grain. Due to which the rice will maintain its shape and would not clump together when mixed with meat. This dish has become known worldwide for its blend of aromatic spices mixed together which you can eat at a restaurant in Vancouver BC.
It is made from basmati rice and a choice of meat or lamb, chicken, or fish in a rich sauce. On the other hand, you can even enjoy a vegetarian version at Sula Indian food Vancouver. Seasoned in several ways, spices like cardamom and cinnamon are added for aroma. The bay leaves, fresh coriander, and mint leaves can bring life to the cuisine. Additionally nuts, dried fruits are blended to add another texture and flavor. Cashew nuts, almonds, raisins, apricots are also most commonly used and for a decorative finish, yellow or orange food coloring is used to dye the rice. One of the most popular biryanis in the world is chicken biryani. Chef Ranveer Brar, an Indian celebrity chef, has created various biryani recipes. The usage of chicken thighs or wings in biryani is entirely specific to the needs of the recipe.
How Biryani Have Acquired the Regional Flavors of India
India was invaded by many foreigners which have resulted in adding various spices and flavors to Biryani. It has resulted in many species of that particular delightful cuisine. Furthermore, India is known as the Land of Spices and has contributed immensely to multiple flavors of biryani, whereas the traditional Persian or Arabian are quite subtle in taste.
Since India is so diverse in the flavors of different regions, the spices used in Biryani are also unique. Like the one from the south has coconut and tamarind flavor, whereas the ones from the north have curb and other spices taste such as cinnamon, bay leaf.
Kinds of Biryani:
There are many types of biryani made in different ways, cooked uniquely. Some main types are Kolkata biryani, memoni biryani, Malabar biryani, Luchnowi biryani, Hyderabadi biryani, Ambur biryani, and others. All these different biryani are cooked in their respective way and thus resulting in delicious individual taste and flavoring.
There is kacchi biryani where raw meat and rice are both cooked together. This meat is marinated in yogurt and spices and is placed at the bottom of the pot. Covered in potatoes and rice on top. Lastly, it is sealed to prevent steaming.
Other is pukki biryani where rice, meat, and sauce are cooked separately, lastly layered. Meaning the rice and meat retain their taste and flavoring. While it is said that you can categorize different biryani in these two types one of kacchi and pukki biryani.
The various dishes have adapted their own cooking style over the years and now each of them is cooked in its own individual way. Let’s get to know about it:
- Lucknow Biryani is made in the original way which is cooked in dum pukht way and that is why it is known as dum biryani. Dum pukht means ‘slow oven’ and is one of the most refined methods of cooking.
- The Calcutta Biryani was introduced by the Nawab people. The dish is made from whole boiled potatoes and meat. And, during the period, the recession had meant that meat had to be replaced with potatoes and it has stuck ever since.
- Hyderabad Biryani was created after Aurangzeb. The ruler spread the recipe with him to the other parts of India. It has a unique flavour of the garam masala used to make it. Garnished with some fried onions makes it even better.
- Tahari Biryani is a vegetarian version where meat is replaced with a variety of vegetables and potatoes, peas, different kinds of beans are used.
- Mutton Biryani is usually cooked with either lamb or goat meat.
- Peshwari Biryani is a type that has no meat in it. Instead of red or white beans, black gram, Kabuli chana, green peas are used in Biryani rice. Sometimes nuts and almonds are also added with rose water or saffron to add richness to the flavor.
These are some different types of Biryani that you can now also relish in different parts of the world. One can get tonnes of biryani recipes online but it needs lots of patience to cook a perfect biryani.
It’s not only about how you cook the rice or whether you use long grain rice while making biryani. The masala is what gives it its genuine character, making it one of the most popular Indian dishes of all time.
Today, Biryani is quite popular all over the world. It has adapted different personal styles. When you are visiting any Asian restaurant or Indian seafood restaurant you will certainly get the biryani and its varied types. You will be able to tell a lot about the heritage and background of India when you eat biryani. This is a dish one of the most well-known, since the time of Mughals and it’s still is.