Vegetable Biriyani Rice

27 February 2019 By

To make Vegetable Biriyani, basmati rice is first semi-cooked with whole spices. Next it’s layered with vegetables cooked in biriyani masala; infused with ghee and saffron milk then finished in the oven.

Ingredients - Serves 12

  • 3 cups basmati rice, soaked in water 30 mins, then drained
  • 9 cups cold water
  • 3 tbsp salt
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 4 green cardamoms
  • 1 star anise
  • 3 cloves
  • 1 tsp shah jeera (black cumin seeds or caraway seeds)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp oil

Biriyani masala

  • 6 cups mixed chopped vegetables, either raw or frozen (such as broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, peas, green beans)
  • 3 tbsp ghee or olive oil
  • 3 cloves
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp Latasha’s Kitchen Biriyani Masala Paste
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup full fat yoghurt
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1½ tsp salt


  • Generous pinch of saffron threads, crushed and soaked in ¼ cup warm milk
  • 2 brown onions, thinly sliced
  • Few tbsp melted ghee
  • 1 tbsp cashew nuts
  • 1 tbsp raisins
  • Fresh coriander and mint leaves
  • Lemon wedges

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  1. Add 9 cups water to a medium pot and bring to a boil.
  2. Next add soaked rice, spices, salt and oil to the pot. Bring to rolling boil and continue cooking until the rice is just tender and chewy (neither soft nor crunchy), approx. 9 minutes until a grain of rice can be broken into 3 parts. Do not overcook. Drain rice well then keep warm in the same pot.
  3. Briefly steam the vegetables until tender but still firm.
  4. In a large saucepan, heat 3 tbsp ghee or oil over medium-high heat.
  5. Add the cloves and fry for a few seconds, then add 1 sliced onion and cook, stirring until translucent. Add Latasha’s Kitchen Biriyani Paste, ¼ cup water and cook, stirring for 5 minutes.
  6. Then add the yoghurt, a tablespoon at a time, and cook stirring well until all the yoghurt is used up. Next add tomato puree and cook for another 5 minutes. Add the steamed vegetables and salt, reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are warmed through in the spice mix.
  7. Preheat oven to 180oC for at least 15 minutes.
  8. Smear melted ghee all over a wide and large oblong baking dish. Spread half of the semi-cooked rice over the base of the dish, place the cooked vegetables evenly on top and cover with remaining rice. Drizzle over the saffron-milk mixture. Cover the dish with a lid or aluminium foil and bake for 20 minutes. Leave to cool slightly.
  9. While the biriyani is in the oven, heat oil or ghee in a fry pan over medium/high heat and deep fry 2 sliced brown onions until crispy/caramelised, remove from the pan. Reduce heat to medium add the raisins and cashews and cook stirring until the raisins are plump and cashews are toasted.
  10. Serve warm as a main or side dish with lemon wedges and garnished with crispy onions, raisins, cashews, coriander and mint leaves. Delicious with raita and kochumber.