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Ambur Dum Biryani

Though I had read about Ambur Biryani, I got to taste it for the first time during our stay in Chennai. The major differences I saw in this Biryani from the usual ones were, the colour and the short grain rice.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine tamil
Servings 6 serving


  • 900 gms Chicken
  • 600 gms Rice Seeraga Samba
  • 200 gms shallots Sliced
  • 200 gms tomatoes Chopped
  • 125 ml Curd - (1/2 cup)
  • 15 gms Chilli powder- (1 heaped tablespoon)
  • 4 green chillies (or less) chopped
  • 2 Cinnamon " stick
  • 6 Cardamom Green
  • 8 Cloves
  • 2 - 4 Bayleaf
  • 1 Star anise
  • 1 cup Coriander leaves chopped
  • 1 cup Mint leaves chopped
  • 1 tablespoon Ginger paste
  • 1 tablespoon Garlic cloves paste
  • 50 gms Butter Ghee Clarified
  • to taste Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Garam masala powder
  • as required Water


  • Wash and soak the rice for at least 30 minutes.
  • Take water in a vessel.
  • Add salt, 1/2 cup coriander leaves, 1/2 cup mint leaves, 3 cardamoms, 1 " cinnamon, 4 cloves, 1 bay leaf and star anise.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Add the soaked rice into it and cook till half done.
  • Drain the rice, but reserve 1 cup of the liquid.
  • Spread the rice in a plate and allow to cool.
  • For the Chicken
  • Heat clarified butter and oil together in a pan.
  • Add 3 cardamoms, 1 " cinnamon, 4 cloves, 1 bay leaf and marathi moggu.
  • Once they start to splutter, add the sliced shallots.
  • Cook the shallots till they turn slightly brown.
  • Add the ginger- garlic pastes and cook till the raw smell goes.
  • Tip in the chopped tomatoes and green chilli.
  • Cook till the tomatoes turn mushy.
  • Add the chilli powder and cook till oil separates.
  • Add the curd, salt and the reserved rice water.
  • Add the chicken pieces and fry for a minute.
  • Cover and cook till the chicken is cooked through.
  • Final Step
  • Spread the cooled rice over the chicken.
  • Sprinkle the garam masala powder and remaining chopped coriander and mint leaves.
  • If using colour, mix it in a teaspoon of milk and sprinkle over the rice.
  • Cover the vessel with aluminium foil followed by a lid.
  • Take water in another flat bottomed vessel and bring to a boil.
  • Place the biryani vessel on a tawa.
  • Place the vessel containing boiling water on top of the biryani vessel.
  • Cook the biryani on low heat for 30 minutes.
  • Mix well before serving.
  • Serve with raita or salna and pickle.