Simple Tomato Biriyani

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  1. Grind 1 cup of freshly grated coconut to a smooth paste  by adding 1 cup of lukewarm water little by little. Strain to extract 2 cups of thin coconut milk. Use this coconut milk for cooking the rice.
  2. Soak 1 cup of basmathi rice in water for 30 minutes. Drain the water & keep aside. Heat 1 tbsp of ghee in a pan & add 1 cardamom. Saute’ till you get a nice aroma & add the rice. Fry the rice for 4-5 minutes. Add 2 cups of boiling coconut milk & 1 tsp of salt. Cover cook the rice on low heat for 10 minutes till all the water has been absorbed by the rice grains. Add 1 tbsp of toasted cashews & 1 tsp of fried raisins to the cooked rice & mix.
  3. Grind together 15 cashews (soaked in hot water for sometime) together with 2 tbsps of grated coconut to a very smooth paste.
  4. In a seperate pan, heat 1 tbsp of ghee & add 1″ piece of cinnamon, 1 clove & 1 cardamom. Stir in 11/4 cup of finely chopped onions & cook till they turn golden brown in colour. Add 5 big galic cloves ( pasted)+ 1 tsp of ginger ( pasted) & cook for 10 minutes. Add 3/4 tsp of kashmiri chilly powder, 1 tbsp of coriander powder, 1/4 tsp of turmeric powder, 1 tsp of chicken masala powder & cook for 2 minutes on low heat. Throw in 1 cup of chopped tomatoes & cook for 15-20 minutes on low heat adding water as & when needed. After the oil seperates, add the ground cashew-coconut paste + 1/2 tsp of fennel powder and 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro. Mix well & remove from heat. This is the tomato masala.
  5. In a dum pot, put half of the cooked rice as the first layer. Put the entire tomato masala over the first layer & top it with the left over cooked rice.
  6. Bake at 180C for 15 minutes.
  7. Serve this biriyani hot with onion raitha or simply some curd.
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