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Last Updated Thursday March 22 2018 09:15 PM IST

Spice potli mussels biryani

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Spice potli mussels biryani

Potli biryani aka kuzhi biryani is the latest frenzy in the foodie-world. If you are into experimenting with distinctive culinary practices, you should definitely try the biryani variants steam-cooked in pouches made of plantain leaves, giving it an exotic aroma.

This potli mussels biryani from Malabar, the biryani capital of Kerala, guarantees to take your tastebuds to a gourmet's heaven.


For marinating mussels

500 gm mussels, shelled and cleaned

1 tsp chili powder

¼ tsp turmeric powder

Salt as required

Oil as required

For the masala

1 bulb of garlic

2 inch slice of ginger

15 green chilies

5 onions, sliced

1 sprig curry leaves

3 tomatoes, chopped

1 tbsp lemon juice

Salt as required

½ cup cilantro, chopped

For the rice

2 cups of khaima rice, washed and rained

3 tbsp ghee

¼ cup oil

Salt, as required

For making potli

10 gm saffron

5 shallots

4 cloves

1 inch long piece of cinnamon

4 cardamom

½ tsp chopped ginger

1 tsp chopped garlic


In a bowl, soak the saffron in warm milk or water and keep aside

For frying mussels

Clean the mussels under running water

Mix all the ingredients for marination and coat the mussels in it

Shallow fry the mussels in oil till they turn golden

Don't over fry the mussels as it will turn crispy

Set them aside

For the rice

Place cloves, cinnamon, cardamom,chopped shallots crushed ginger and garlic on a clean cotton cloth

Tie the edges of the cloth together to make it int a potli, a small bag

Place potli in boiling water and boil for 15 minutes

Heat a rice wok, pour oil and ghee

Add 2 thinly sliced onions, fry till they turn golden

Keep them aside

In same wok, add drained rice and saute for 5 minutes in medium flame

Add boiled water and salt

Place the potli in it and cook it in low flame for 15 minutes

When the rice is cooked, remove the potli

For masala

Grind all the ingredients for the masala into a paste

In a pressure cooker, heat the oil that used for frying the mussels

Add the remaining onion, curry leaves and some salt

Saute till onions turn tender

Add the ground mixture to the onions, saute for sometimes or until the raw smells leaves

Now add tomatoes to the pan and cook till it turns mushy

Add a cup of boiled water and pressure cook the mixture for 5 minutes.

To this masala, dd the fried mussels, lemon juice, half of the fried onion and cilantro

Cook it until the masala dries

Dum process

In a plantain leaf, place the the mussels masala

Place the cooked rice over it and sprinkle the soaked saffron, fried onions and chopped cilantro on the top

Carefully gather sides of the banana leaf and tie it with a thick thread

Ensure the leaf does not tear

Meanwhile, boil water in a idli cooker in high heat for about 10 minutes

Place this biryani pouch on the innermost idli plate and place the lid

Steam cook the biryani in medium heat for 10 minutes

Once done, turn off the stove

Open the lid after 5 minutes

Allow the biryani pouch to cool down

Open the pouch and gently mix with a fork before serving

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