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Turkey Biryani with Raita


  • For the biryani

  • 1kg (2lb 3oz) of cooked turkey meat, diced, kept warm in a steamer

  • 400g (14oz) basmati rice, boiled or steamed to just done, kept warm

  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil

  • 2 cloves

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 star anise

  • 1inch piece of cinnamon stick

  • 1 tsp cumin seeds

  • 4 medium size onions, thinly sliced

  • 1 tbsp garlic, minced

  • 1 tbsp ginger, minced

  • 1 green chilli, minced

  • 1 tsp turmeric powder

  • 1 tsp coriander powder

  • ½ tsp black pepper powder, freshly crushed

  • 1 tsp garam masala

  • 4-6 medium size tomatoes, blended to a paste

  • 200ml (7floz) coconut milk

  • salt to taste

  • For the raita

  • 300g (11oz) greek style yoghurt

  • 1 tsp cumin seeds, toasted and crushed to powder

  • 4 tbsp seedless cucumber, grated

  • salt to taste

  • ½ tbsp mint leaves, fine chopped

  • To serve

  • 2 tbsp coriander leaves, freshly chopped


  • 1.

    Heat the oil in a pan; add the cloves, bay leaves, star anise, cinnamon stick and cumin seeds.

  • 2.

    As the spices crackle in the heat, add the sliced onion and a pinch of salt, sauté until golden brown in colour.

  • 3.

    Stir-in the ginger, garlic and chilli, sauté for 2 minutes or until cooked.

  • 4.

    Add the turmeric, coriander, black pepper and garam masala powders and sauté for 1 minute before adding the tomatoes.

  • 5.

    While stirring, bring to simmer and cook for further 2-3 minutes and then add coconut milk and simmer for further 2-3 minutes. Check for seasoning.

  • 6.

    When ready to serve, stir in turkey into the sauce and heat for a minute and add rice and mix lightly with a rice fork.

  • For the raita:

  • 1.

    Whisk the yoghurt and mix in rest of the ingredients and serve chilled.

  • To Serve:

  • 1.

    Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve with cucumber raita.

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