Pakistani Biryani: Snacks with Sitara

In celebration of World Food Week on Bite, Sitara cooks a Pakistani biryani.

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes


  • 1 tsp Ghee
  • Sitara’s family recipe Biriyani spice mix – alternative supermarket spice mix (world food section)
  • A pinch of Cumin seed and Star Aniseed
  • Chopped tomatoes
  • Chilli, garlic and ginger, minced
  • A dash of Rose water
  • A dash of Cumin water
  • Diced onions
  • Sliced onions, fried
  • Coriander, chopped
  • Lemon juice, one whole lemon
  • 1 tsp Coriander seeds
  • A whole load of turmeric
  • 3 Bay leaves
  • ½ tsp Chilli powder
  • ½ tsp Coriander powder
  • Fresh coriander, chopped
  • A pinch of Pink rock salt
  • Baby potatoes
  • Chicken breast fillets, diced
  • Plain yoghurt
  • Cucumber, grated
  • Basmati rice, soaked


  1. Put the soaked Basmati rice on the hob at a low heat and bring to the boil increasing the heat slightly and cook until fluffy, leave on a low heat once cooked 
  2. In a separate pan, add in the Ghee, cumin seeds and the garlic, ginger and chilli
  3. Next add in all of the diced onions and mix together until brown and sizzling
  4. Once brown,add in the coriander seeds and star aniseed,3 bay leaves, coriander powder and chilli powder
  5. Add in a whole load of turmeric and some pink salt and mix
  6. Gradually incorporate the tomatoes
  7. Add in the diced chicken breast and mix in with the paste
  8. Add in the potatoes and mix together
  9. Add in the rest of the tomatoes and fill empty jug with water to add into the mix later
  10. Add in the spice mix and cumin water and rose water and mix
  11. Mix in the juice of a whole fresh lemon
  12. Add in the fresh coriander
  13. Gradually add in water to soften potatoes
  14. Add in more rose water and cumin water for more flavour
  15. Place the lid on the pot and leave to cook until chicken and potatoes are cooked through then remove from heat
  16. Stir together again gently, remove the bay leaves and star aniseed
  17. Layer the rice and then the meat and sauce and continue to layer in a deep glass dish or any deep dish you may have
  18. Fry the sliced onions in some garlic oil for laying over the top of the biryani
  19. Mix the cucumber and yoghurt which will be served along with the biryani
  20. Lay the fried onions over the biryani
  21. Serve the biryani with the yoghurt and cucumber side and enjoy!

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