Just the usual vegetable biryani with the inclusion protein rich soy nuggets. Ah ha !! what a way to camouflage meat. Not a great deal of taste for your taste buds nor appealing, that’s how they are and its ok to try once in while, specially if it good for you. For many its a tough job to incorporate these in daily menu.. especially kids and even as grown-ups we shy away with excuses. Adding them to pulav /biryani could be a better start to introduce this to your family and then gradually add to other preparations to cut down on the meat. Anything biryani gets in faster without any complaints and hence my way to include these would be to make veg biryani and serve it along with variety salad and raita!
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|20 cubes||Soya Chunks|
|2 cups (sliced)||Onions|
|3 long chillies||Green Chili|
|1 teaspoon||Ginger Garlic paste|
|1/2 cup||Fresh mint (chopped)|
|1/2 cup||Coriander (Chopped)|
|1 cup||Mixed Vegetables|
|1/2 teaspoon||Turmeric powder|
|1 teaspoon||Red chili powder|
|3 teaspoon||Coriander powder|
|2 teaspoon||Salt (or to taste)|
|2 leaves||Bay leaf|
|4 inch||Cinnamon (break into small pieces)|
|5||Crushed Black pepper|
|1/2 teaspoon||Cumin seeds|
|2 cups||Basmati Rice|
|2 cups||Coconut Milk (dilute / light)|
|2 cups||Water (refer notes)|
You can get these Soy nuggets at any Indian or Middle-eastern grocers.
I just followed the package instruction to cook. Boil some water in a pan along with a pinch of salt and add the soy chunks to it and let it rolling boil for 5 minutes. Switch off and then let it stay for another 10 minutes.
Then drain all the water and give a nice rinse in cold water. Now you got to squeeze out all the water and keep them aside.
Soya chunks does not have much of an appealing taste so always combine them with other vegetables. My choice of veggies are carrots, beans and green peas.
In a pan heat oil and add all the dry spices listed under table -2. Le them sizzle, then add chopped onions, slit open green chili, chopped coriander and mint leaves. Fry them for a while , add ginger garlic paste and chopped tomato. Saute until the tomatoes gets mushy. Now add the mixed veggies, soy chunks, turmeric, red chilli powder, coriander powder and salt. Fry for couple of minutes and then switch off.
Meanwhile wash basmati rice and keep aside. At this stage you can either pick pressure cooker or rice cooker for finishing.
1. If using a pressure cooker combine rice, cooked gravy, coconut milk and water in the pan. Cook upto 2 whistles and switch off. Let the steam release, then transfer the content to a wide bowl or tray and pour melted ghee on top and garnish with chopped coriander leaves. OR cook for one whistle over medium high flame and simmer for 10 minutes over low flame.
2. I used a rice cooker instead – its the same content but relax mode.
Whichever way you cook its still going to be soy chunks biryani, get the mind set and enjoy with onion raita and colourful salad on the side. These are lunch box friendly, pair it with simple raita and you are good to go!
- Yield about 3-4 Adult servings.
- Use less chunks if its your first time.
- Plain meal maker biryani is too bland hence I’ve added vegetables to blend in some flavor. You can also make it plain.
- To yield slightly cooked grainy rice use about 1& 3/4 cup of water. If you prefer fully cooked soft rice then use the above measure.
- Soaking rice for 10 minute is advisable. To much soaking can make the rice mushy. Cut down on the water a little bit if soaking for longer time.
- Adding coconut milk gives nice flavor to the biryani, you may skip that and use diluted yogurt if too health conscious.
- I’ve used Indiagate Basmati rice.