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  • 1 kg mutton, cut into chunks
  • 1 small tub plain yogurt or buttermilk (±250 – 300 ml)
  • 1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste
  • ½ – ¾ teaspoon cayenne pepper, to your taste
  • 1 ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • saffron strands, optional but I recommend this, delicious
  • ±7 curry leaves
  • salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoon biryani masala mix
  • 1 – 2 teaspoon masala curry powder

Marinate your meat for 3 – 4 hours (or overnight is better) in yogurt, ginger-garlic paste, salt, cayenne, biryani mix and curry powder together.
Oil your pot and arrange the marinated meat at the base.
Top with sliced onions and chopped curry leaves.
Cover and place in a warm oven at 180ºC.
Cook till meat is almost done. (1 ½ to 2 hours)

While the meat is cooking, wash and soak rice in water for about ½ hour. Soak a pinch of saffron in 2 tablespoon water.
Drain rice through sieve and roast in a tablespoon of butter till it starts crackling (about 5 minutes). Add saffron strands with saffron water to rice.
Once the meat is almost done, spread saffron soaked rice on top of the meat, stir.
Add salt as needed along with as much water as is required keeping in mind the liquid juices already present in the cooked meat.
The total liquid content should be slightly less than double the measurement of rice.
Cover and place inside the oven. Cook for about 30 minutes till all the liquid evaporates and rice is cooked through.

Switch off the oven and let rest inside for another 15 – 20 minutes. Finally take the pot out and decorate with slit chillies and coriander.
Serve warm with accompaniments of naan, salsa and coriander chutney!

Recipe: Amanda Conradie
Photo:  Elize de Kock


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