It got here wrapped within the heat aroma of spices. I inhaled the perfume of the Dindigul biryani, and started to make deep inroads into the meat-and-rice dish that had been served at a restaurant in Coonoor.
Dingidul — recognized for its locks and biryani — was miles away, however the cooks within the Coonoor restaurant had mastered the recipe. Cooked with succulent items of hen and aromatic jeera rice, and tempered with entire spices, the dish bolstered my religion in south Indian biryanis.
For years, biryani in Delhi meant an Awadhi or the Dilli model of the dish. Then Andhra Bhavan launched us to the Hyderabadi biryani, and we couldn’t have sufficient of it. There was a time when our Sunday lunch meant a plate of Hyderabadi biryani, scorching and spicy, and adorned with a boiled egg.
Now, eating places, huge and small, have been serving numerous sorts of south Indian biryanis within the metropolis. You possibly can dig into Kerala’s chemmeen biryani, Chettinad mutton biryani, and even Mangalore fish biryani and Coorg meat biryani.
I at all times loved the biryanis of Mahabelly in Saket, specifically its Thalissery hen biryani. I additionally recall a satisfying meal I had at a restaurant referred to as Thalaivar. It has on the menu Chettinad hen biryani (₹525) and Malabar mutton biryani (₹575). Its hen biryani is cooked in a Coimbatore curry model. Veruan in Kailash Colony Market serves Malabar prawn (₹599) and mutton biryanis (₹599). Tiny eating places in Outdated Rajinder Nagar, which cater to college students from south India getting ready for the civil providers, serve south Indian biryanis, too.
A number of days in the past, a good friend instructed me about an eatery referred to as Thalairaj Biryani in Indirapuram. We ordered a hen dum biryani (₹329) and a pepper hen biryani (₹329) and liked them. The dishes had been spicy, however had a scrumptious southern flavour, enhanced by curry leaves. The pepper hen biryani had items of boneless hen cooked within the Chettinad model and had the heady style of crushed pepper.
Then, for our dinner a couple of nights in the past, we ordered a plate of Malabar prawn biryani (₹350) from Lodge Malabar in New Associates’ Colony. The rice — evenly stirred on prime, however with a gravy-like consistency on the backside — had some juicy bits of prawn in it and a tart style that I appreciated.
South Indian biryani aficionados consider that the biryani — at the least rice-and-meat cooked collectively — originated within the south, and finds point out in Sangam literature. The range within the south is certainly mind-boggling. That’s not stunning, for individuals within the area are predominantly rice eaters. Tamil Nadu has its Salem biryani, which is cooked with long-grained rice, not like its Ambur biryani, which makes use of the small jeera samba rice, and is cooked with yoghurt and tomatoes. Hyderabad has numerous sorts of dishes – together with kucchibiryani and doodh ki biryani, which is cooked with milk and cream.
Some buddies of mine declare that there’s nothing referred to as a vegetable biryani, however fairly a couple of eating places additionally serve rice-and-vegetable dishes. One widespread dish is the jackfruit biryani of Andhra Pradesh.
The south Indian biryanis are bringing in new whiffs of flavours within the north. Let a thousand aromas thrive.