Luckhnowi Chicken Biryani

Luckhnowi Chicken Biryani

Nosh Farmaye…Lucknow ki famous Chicken Biryani!!!
Lucknow,the famous The city of Nawabs’ is known for its nawabi heritage, architectural brilliance and some of the most royal relishes. Luckhnowi Cuisine or Avadhi Cuisine is a cuisine native to the city of Lucknow, which is the capital of the state of Uttar Pradesh in Northern India. The Awadh region has been greatly influenced by Mughal cooking techniques, and the cuisine of Lucknow bears similarities to those of Central Asia, Kashmir, Punjab and Hyderabad. The city is also known for its Nawabi foods.

The bawarchis (chefs) and (gourmet cooks) of Awadh invented the dum style of cooking or the art of cooking over a slow fire, which has become synonymous with Lucknow today[source Wikipedia].
Lucknow is my hometown and I have enjoyed eating all these Royal Nawabi dishes in my school days. If you are a Biryani lover, you have to Visit Lucknow once to enjoy the best Biryanis and Kababs and I bet you can not resist yourself from visiting again.


Talking about Lucknow, this city is not just a city, but an entire new culture. Tehzeeb (mannerisms) and Nafasat (sophistication) can be said to be the true contents of the world-renowned Lakhnowi culture. Lucknow city and its people have always been identified by the immense respect that they give each other. Well, I can write pages and pages on Lucknow,its culture,fashion and food may be in my next Luckhnowi recipe, but today lets talk about this delicious chicken Biryani.


I made this special traditional Chicken Biryani to represent my cultural food in an event called INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL NIGHT in my son’s school here in United States. I was so proud to present the food of my culture and a recipe which belongs to my native place. I am sure you can guess what happened at the event…yess!! people loved it and Biryani was gone in no time.


The Process of making Biryani is divided into three major steps. First preparing the chicken curry, Second boiling the rice with spices and third layering both of them and let them cook on very low flame for long. You can eat chicken curry and rice separately also, if you don’t want to make Biryani or you can serve chicken curry with Naan or Rotis and enjoy this Luckhnowi chicken curry too.


Here is the recipe

Luckhnowi Chicken Biryani

  • Servings: 6
  • Time: 35 minutes
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Preparation time 2 hours


For the chicken

Fresh chicken – 1kg or 2.25 lbs
Desi Ghee or Clarified Bitter/Oil- 3/4 cups
Bay leaf- 1 big
Green cardamom ground- 1.5tsp
Ground cumin-1tsp
Ground cloves-3/4tsp
Ground cinnamon-1tsp
Ground Black Cardamom-1/2tsp
Ground pepper-1/2tsp
a small pinch of ground nutmeg
onion paste-1 cup
Almond paste-2.5 tsp
Ginger garlic paste- 2.5 tablespoon
Roasted Poppey Seeds Paste- 1.5tbsp
Red/Kashmiri chilli Powder-2 tsp { or Paprika}
Yogurt/hung curd- 3/4 cup
Salt to taste

For the rice

Basamati Rice-3 cups soaked for an hour
cinnamon sticks-2
green cardamoms- 4 or 5
Ghee/oil- 2 tbsp
onions 2 sliced
kewda water- 1 tsp
light cream – 3/4 cup
kneaded wheat dough to seal the lid ( making Dum)



Preparing the chicken curry
1. Heat the Ghee or oil in a heavy based pan over high heat and add all the powdered spices, bay leaf and and onion paste. Saute for few minutes and then add ginger garlic paste, almond paste and poppey paste.
2. Add red chilli powder and about 1 cup water and fry for 2 miues until the ghee or oil separates out and rises to the top
3. Now add Chicken, salt and continue stirring until all the spices stick over the chicken. Make sure you do all this over high flame and with continous stirring. this will take around 10 minutes.
4. Reduce the heat and add yogurt and cook until the chicken is tender and the sauce has thick consistency.
Your chicken curry is ready.


Preparing the Rice

1. Bring a deep pan of water to the boil, add the rice,little salt,little ghee or oil, cinnamon,cardamom,and cook for about 10-12 minutes or until the rice is almost done. Drain the water and keep the rice aside.

2. Mean wile, put saffron in a small bowl, add the milk and soak until required.


Layering Rice and Chicken

1.Heat the ghee or oil in a flat heavy based pan or pot over medum heat. Add the sliced onions and fry for about 5-7 minutes. or until golden brown. Remove from the pan and keep aside.
2.Spread rice over the base of the pan, then pour half of the saffron milk, half of kewda water, and half of the cream. Spread half of the cooked chicken curry over the top and repeat the process for the second layer.
3. Now cover the pan with a tight fitting lid and seal with dough from all the sides. if you dont have dough, you can use aluminium foil too.
4. let this cook on low fame for about 35 minutes and then open the lid. give everything a gentle stir, check the salt and seasonings for taste. Garnish with friend onions,raisins and freshly chopped cilantro and serve hot with Raita, chutney and sliced onions.



Foot Notes

1. It is always recommended to use Basamati rice for making Biryanis.\
2. Using cream is optional, if you don’t want this rich you can omit adding cream.
3. I made this Biryani using desi Ghee( clarified butter) as I wanted to make it the traditional way, but you can also use any kind of oil you want.
4. Make sure you don’t overcook the rice otherwise they will mash up and biryani can loose its texture. it is advisable to cook the rice till they are just done. Keep checking them using your fingers.

Check out other delicious recipes from my blog too
Mushroom Dum Biryani
Nargisi Kababs
Murgh Kali Mirch

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