Begin by washing and soaking 2 cups of basmati rice for 30 minutes.
In this recipe, I’ve used 1/4 kg of spiny gourd. Make slits, and if the spiny gourd is too ripe, remove the seeds.
Now, let’s prepare the masala for the biryani. Heat a pan and add 1 tbsp coriander seeds.
Add 1 tsp cumin seeds, 4-5 dried chilies, and fry until they change color.
Next, add 1/4 tsp peppercorns, 2 tbsp dried coconut pieces, and turn off the stove.
Now, add 1 tbsp dried fenugreek leaves and mix. Powder these ingredients in a mixer jar.
Next on the agenda is frying the spiny gourd. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan.
Add the slit spiny gourd.Fry for 4-5 minutes on low flame. If the spiny gourds are large, they need to be steamed or boiled before frying.
Cut off the stove after the color changes.
To a mixing bowl, add 1/4 cup curd.
Add 2 tbsp tamarind pulp, salt to taste, 1 tsp chili powder, prepared masala powder, 1/2 tsp garam masala powder, 1 1/2 tsp ginger-garlic paste, 2 dried chilies, and mix.
Next, add 1/2 tsp turmeric powder and mix.
Now, add the fried spiny gourd and mix.
Then, add brown onions, coriander leaves, and mint leaves. Let it sit for a while. In the meantime, let’s cook the rice.
Fill more than half of the pan with water and heat it.
Add 1 tsp salt, 2-3 bay leaves, 1 tsp shahjeera, 2-3 cinnamon stick pieces, 5-6 cloves, 4 cardamom, 1 small star anise piece, 1 black stone flower, and let the water simmer.
As the water starts to simmer, add the soaked rice.
Let the rice simmer until it is about 70% cooked. The rest will be cooked in the dum. Strain off the water.
Now, let’s prepare the dum layers.
Take a pan with a thick base and spread 2 tbsp clarified butter or ghee on the base.
Add the marinated spiny gourd mixture to the bottom.
Next, add a little water and then add the rice.
Sprinkle brown onions on top along with coriander leaves and mint leaves.
Also, add some clarified butter or ghee on top.
To 1/2 cup warm milk, add a pinch of saffron and mix. This step is optional.
Pour this milk on the rice.
Place a heavy lid on to ensure no vapor comes out of the pan.
Seal off the edges with dough.
Now, we have to cook the dum biryani for 5 minutes on high flame, then, 5 minutes on low flame. Afterward, place a thick flat pan between the flame and biryani pot and cook for an additional 8 minutes on high flame.
Cut off the stove and open the lid after 5 minutes. You’ll notice that the leaves have also changed color.