I’ve been pondering about the best way to describe this dish…. And here goes…

Akni, a rice dish mixed with curry then steamed to bind all the flavors together.

Amongst the Indian community some call this a biryani with lentils added to the mix and for others it’s Akni.

It’s a crowd pleaser served with dhai and a carrot salad. For those who call it biryani would serve it with dhal (see plain dhal recipe). Which ever way you may want to serve this dish it’s still delicious.

Im going to share a chicken Akni recipe but you can use lamb or veg.

Part 1
Boil 3 cups rice, drain and leave aside.

Part 2
Peel and cut about 6 potatoes into halves, depending on the size of your potatoes. Fry in oil until cooked. See alternate method in notes.

Part 3
1 onion, chopped

1 chicken, disjointed
1 heaped teaspoon crushed garlic

4 teaspoons chilli powder
1 heaped teaspoon cummin powder
1 heaped teaspoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon tumeric powder
4 large tomatoes, grated
1 cinnamon stick
2 cardamon pods
4 cloves
Salt to taste

Heat some oil in a pot. Add onion and a sprinkle of whole cummin seeds. When the onion turns a beautiful golden color add the chicken with the rest of the ingredients. When the chicken is cooked remove from heat, add the potatoes. Now add the curry to the rice and mix gently making sure all the rice has been coated.

Layer in pot, dot with butter, cover with foil, place the lid over and steam in oven for approximately 30-45 minutes.

Serve with dhai, salad and papad or dhal.

– An alternative to frying your potatoes would be to cook them in the microwave as you would a jacket potato. Once the potatoes are soft remove from microwave. Peel and slice. Layer into pot. Be gentle as you don’t want it to end us being mashed.

– Set your oven at 180 degrees Celsius when you ate ready to steam your food. If your Akni is on the dry side, add a quarter cup of water before steaming.

– Depending on the rice you are using, don’t make your rice too soft as it will cook further in the oven.

– If the chilli powder you are using is too hot, decrease the amount you add to your chicken. (unless you prefer hot food)


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