Afghani Biryani Rice

2 cups long grain rice (basmati is good)
1 tsp shahi jeera
2 black cardamoms
4 green cardamoms
1″ cinnamon
5 pepper corns
3 cloves
1 mace flower (javitri)
1 tsp ginger garlic paste
1/4 cup milk
A few strands of saffron (kesar)
A few drops of rose water
2 onions
1/2 cup cashew nuts
Salt to taste
Oil as required
Ghee as required
3-3/4 cups of warm water

Wash and soak the rice for about an hour.
Soak the kesar in the milk.
Finely slice the onion and fry to a crisp brown brista.
On medium heat, fry the cashew nuts till a light golden brown.
Heat ghee in a vessel and add all the whole spices.
Saute till fragrant and add the rice.
Fry till the rice is shiny and then add the water, rose water and saffron milk.
Add salt to taste and bring to a boil.
When the water is almost dry, stir in the onions and cashew nuts, leaving a little for garnishing.
Cover and cook till water is completely dry.
Remove cover and garnish with the remaining onions and cashew nuts.
Serve hot.

Mirchi ka salan is an excellent accompaniment.


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