2 tbsp ghee plus 2 tsp for frying the nuts
3 sliced onion
3 tbsp ginger garlic paste
1 tsp mustard paste
2 tomatoes, sliced
2 tbsp lime juice
2 tbsp coriander and mint leaves, chopped
½ tsp 7-spices masala powder (Available in stores. Arabic seven spices powder tends to include equal measures of ground black pepper, paprika, ground cumin, ground coriander, ground cloves, ground nutmeg, and ground cinnamon)
2 tbsp yoghurt
800gm Hammour fish or any other Grouper fish
600gm biryani Basmati rice
Whole garam masala (3 cardamom, 2 black cardamom,1-inch cinnamon stick, 2 cloves, black peppercorn, 1 bay leaf)
Salt and lemon juice to taste
Rosewater/kewra Water (for sprinkling on top)
4-5 saffron strands soaked in 3 tbsp warm milk
To garnish: 5 Pieces Makhana (popped Lotus seeds) white, 1 tbsp cashewnuts, 1 tbsp raisins, boiled egg slices, onion slices, mint and coriander leaves chopped as needed
1. Heat a pan on medium heat, add 2 tsp ghee then sliced onion and sauté well. Add salt and when onion browns add ginger garlic paste; sauté then add yellow mustard paste; sauté well then cook for 3 mins.
2. Add chopped tomatoes and cook for 5-8 mins then add lime juice. Add 7-spice masala powder, coriander and mint leaves, yoghurt, reduce heat and cook fish on very low heat for 3 mins - carefully so the fish does not break.
3. Soak the basmati rice for 30 minutes in sufficient water.
4. In a deep pot boil 1 litre water then add whole garam masala and boil for 10 to 15 minutes. Add salt and some lemon juice, and when the water and rice come to the same level (rice cooked 80 per cent) switch off heat and drain water.
5. In a pot layer rice and fish masala. Repeat this alternate layering of rice and masala - finish with a layer of rice on top.
6. Sprinkle 7-spice masala powder and rosewater/kewra water on top of the rice.
7. Cook dum on very low fire, 5 to 6 mins.
8. Garnish the biryani with cashews, raisins, mint and coriander leaves, saffron, boiled egg and makhana. Serve hot, along with mix raita and salan.