Here is a recipe for Pollachi Mess Style Chicken Biryani made with Seeraga Samba Rice, homemade masala paste, and homemade biryani masala powder.
Here is another interesting recipe for chicken biryani that is packed with flavors. This recipe comes from Hamsaveni Akka who used to run a mess in Pollachi and this recipe is her specialty. This recipe came by in gram measurements only and I have not changed it. So you will need a weighing scale to make this biryani. (PS – I do not have cup measurements – Sorry!!! ) The meat and rice are used in a 1:1 ratio in this recipe. Also, to mimic the cooking on the coal embers, I have done the final part of the “dum” in an OTG oven. I have found that finishing the “dum” part in the oven cooks the rice evenly and the rice stays separate and the texture comes out great.
The spice/heat part of the biryani comes only from the green chillies. Other than that, masala powders like red chilli powder, coriander powder, etc… are not used in this recipe. The flavor and aroma of green chillies dominate in this recipe. Having said that, it is not a very spicy biryani.
Tip for dum in an OTG oven:
Once the meat is cooked and the liquid (water, coconut milk, etc….) is added, it’s important that the liquid comes to a rolling boil. Once it’s boiling add the rice and let it come to a boil again. Once it boils, remove from heat and then place the pot (covered with a tight lid) in the oven and bake for 20 minutes at 200°C. I usually preheat the oven to 200°C for 10 minutes.
Seeraga Samba rice is used for making this biryani. It is a short-grained rice that’s very popular in Tamilnadu, Kerala and parts of Karnataka. It is a preferred variety of rice for making biryani, pulav etc… in the region. The rice acts like a sponge and soaks up the flavors from the masala well.
There is a wet biriyani masala and a dry biriyani masala powder that needs to be prepped before starting to make the biryani.
A paste of shallots, garlic, ginger, and green chillies is ground to a coarse paste and used in the recipe.
Spices are ground to a powder and it will be the dry masala. No need to dry roast the spices.
Here are the things you can buy online for making this recipe
OTG Oven https://amzn.to/3WqQu9e
Le Creuset Dutch Oven 5.5 qt https://amzn.to/3OOp5L3
Heavy Duty Indian Mixie https://amzn.to/3GptNKD
Stone Flower Spice – Kalpasi https://amzn.to/3GlOKGh
Seeraga Samba Rice https://amzn.to/3wA9RDf
Here is the video of how to make Pollachi Mess Style Kozhi Biryani
Ingredients For Dry Masala Powder
15 grams cinnamon/cassia
1/2 teaspoon kal paasi
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon black pepper
Ingredients For Wet Masala Paste
100 grams Indian shallots (weight after peeling)
50 grams of garlic (weight after peeling)
50 grams of ginger (weight after peeling)
25 grams of green chillies
2 tablespoon peanut oil
3 tablespoon ghee
400 grams of sliced onions
150 grams of tomatoes, ground to a puree
25 grams mint leaves, chopped
25 grams of coriander leaves, chopped
75 ml plain curd
2 teaspoon salt
120 ml coconut milk
1/2 lime, juiced
500 grams seeraga samba rice
500 grams chicken bone-in
1000 ml water (divided)
Wash and soak the rice just before starting to cook. Let it soak for 30-45 minutes.
Grind all the ingredients listed under “Dry Masala Powder” to a fine powder. A heavy duty mixie or a coffee grinder is preferred for grinding the spices to a fine powder.
Grind all the ingredients listed under “Wet Masala Paste” to a coarse paste. Adjust the green chillies according to your taste. Note: the shallots, garlic and ginger have been weighed after peeling them.
Making the Biryani
Take a heavy-bottomed pan and add the peanut oil and the ghee. Vegetable oil can also be used in place of peanut oil.
Add the sliced onions and saute the onions on a medium flame till golden.
Add the wet masala paste to the pan and saute for 4-5 minutes on medium flame. The oil should separate from the masala and should be very aromatic.
At this stage, add the dry masala powder and saute for a couple of minutes.
Grind the tomatoes in a mixie to a coarse paste/puree and add to the pan. Cook for a minute.
Add the coriander leaves and the mint leaves and mix well to combine. Add the plain curd to the pan and mix well to combine. Add the chicken and mix well. Bone-In chicken is preferred for this recipe. Add 500 ml water and mix well. Add in the salt. Cook for 15 minutes on a low flame. The chicken should be cooked at that time. If the chicken is not done, cook for a couple of minutes more.
At this stage add in the coconut milk (canned is fine), lime juice, and another 500ml of water. Let it come to a boil. Once everything comes to a boil, add the soaked and drained rice. Mix well. Let it come to a boil again. Cover the pan with a lid
Now place the pot in a preheated oven / OTG (Preheat the oven for 10 minutes at 200°C). Bake for 20 minutes. After the said time, remove the pot from the oven and let it rest for 15 minutes on the table before opening it. After the said time, open the lid and mix well to combine. Serve hot with raita.
- Prep Time: 20m
- Cook Time: 60m
Keywords: kozhi biryani