On my ancestry quest, I learned my great grandmother was from New Delhi and was an excellent cook!
So, today we are making an Indian hashtag-tradish: vegan Kathal Biryani with Jackfruit!
The fruit of the jack tree can be eat when ripe or unripe, is considered a vegetable AND a fruit. I’d say it’s a “jack” of all trades 😉
As a fruit, it’s used in desserts like pies or made into jams and syrups. As a vegetable, it’s used in stews, curries and Biryani! So, lets get down to it!
LISTEN TO JADE IN INDIA (below)
For The Rice
1.5 cups basmati rice
4 cups water for cooking the rice
water for soaking the rice
one single strand of mace
2 green cardamoms
1 inch cinnamon
2 to 3 cloves
1 tejpatta (indian bay leaf)
salt as required
For Jackfruit Biryani Gravy
3 cup chopped jackfruit (kathal)
1 cup soy, coconut, almond or cashew-based yogurt
½ teaspoon turmeric
½ teaspoon red chili powder
a single strand of mace
a small piece of stone flower
3 green cardamoms
1 inch cinnamon
1 teaspoon shah caraway seeds
2 medium thinly sliced onions
1 medium chopped tomato
1.5 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves
1.5 tablespoon chopped mint leaves
3 tablespoon ghee
Combine 1 inch ginger + 3 garlic cloves +1 green chili and blend into a paste
1.5 to 2 cups water
salt as required
For Layering Jackfruit Biryani
1 teaspoon ghee
3 tablespoon soy, coconut, almond milk
2 pinch of saffron
1 teaspoon rose water
Prepping Jackfruit in India!
Rinse rice till the water runs clear
Soak the rice in water for 30 mins.
Boil 4 cups of water in a pan or pot.
Drain the rice and then add it to the boiling water.
Add all the whole spices – mace, cardamoms, cinnamon, cloves and tejpatta.
Season with salt and cook the rice till the grains are 3/4th cooked. Drain and keep the rice aside.
Once all the steam has gone from the rice, cover the rice.
Apply oil on your palms, knife, and chopping board
Chop the jackfruit and remove the seeds
Place chopped jackfruit in a pan or a large bowl of water to prevent discoloration
Preparing Jackfruit Gravy For Biryani
Heat ghee in a Dutch oven or pot
Add all mace, stone flower, cinnamon, cloves, caraway seeds, cardamoms to pot and Saute for 1 minute
Add the sliced onions and cook until they are caramelized
Remove half of the onions and drain them on paper towels.
Saute ginger, garlic and green chili paste for a minute or utill the raw aroma goes away.
Then add the tomatoes, mint leaves and coriander leaves. Saute for 1 to 2 mins.
Add both the spice powders – red chili powder and turmeric powder
Add the chopped jackfruit. Stir and saute for 7 to 8 mins. Then add the beaten yogurt.
Stir and add water. Add salt and cover the pot with its lid.
Simmer the gravy till the jackfruit is cooked and tender.
If the water dries up while cooking, then you can add some water.
Also soak saffron in warm milk and keep aside.
Assembling The Kathal Biryani
In the same Dutch oven or pot, on top of the jackfruit gravy, add half of the fried onions.
Spread a second layer of rice. Add all the rice in this layer.
If you want you can make 4 layers. Then you will have to make these layers in another pan or pot.
Sprinkle the saffron flavored milk along with the saffron threads, rose water or kewra water on the rice. Also dot with ghee.
Cooking Kathal Biryani
If done cooking on stove top – heat a tava or griddle. When the tava becomes hot, lower the flame. Place a moist kitchen napkin or towel on the pot covering it. Then place the lid tightly. The moist napkin or towel should not touch the biryani. Keep the pot on the tava and dum cook for 25 to 30 mins on a low flame.
If baking in oven – cover the lid of the dutch oven tightly. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees c. Place the dutch oven in the oven and bake for 20 to 25 mins.
Once done, allow the jackfruit biryani to stand for 7 to 8 mins. Later serve the kathal biryani with raita, pickle and papad.