Lamb Biryani - Rosh HaShana 5773 Indian Style

Every year as Rosh HaShana, The Jewish New Year, rolled in, my mom used to make this lamb biryani as a celebratory dish. The lamb was fork tender and still gorgeous pinkish inside, even after cooking for an hour and a half. Traditionally my mom adds potatoes into the dish, but I did not include them. The dish ages well over time, but potatoes are best when freshly cooked, not the next day or two. My mom also uses 4-5 chiles in this recipes but I toned it down. This particular version is super authentic even with the minor tweaks, directly from my mom's kitchen.
Traditionally we cook the rice al dente by boiling it like pasta, draining, and then layering as you will see in the recipe. The entire layered biryani then is put on a low heat stove, with the lid on. The rice cooks further to perfection by the steam. In recent years my mom cooks the rice fully first as instructed in this recipe then layers it. That way you have the option to serve this dish deconstructed, each component on its own, if you wish. It is also a full proof method if you are a novice. You don't run into an issue of burning the bottom or risking the rice not being fully cooked. The flavors of every component come together in the Biryani in complete harmony with either method.

I am very happy this Lamb Biryani was featured today, online, and this past Thursday, September 6, in print, in The Jewish Daily Forward's quarterly Food and Drink pull out section. You might remember I wrote about Indian Shakshuka among other articles, for the Jewish Forward's online food blog in the past, The Jew and the Carrot. Read the article with a bit of history of the dish and a full detailed recipe with fried cilantro, as a garnish, one of my mom's ingenious touches.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish all of my family, friends and readers, Jewish or not, alike, Shana Tova Oo Metooka, שנה טובה ומתוקה A Good and a Sweet New Year. a Happy 5773 to you all!