Monday, June 8, 2015

Malabar Vegetable Biriyani: Guest Post By The Big Sweet Tooth

One of the charms of blogging is to make a new friend every day. How we live in different countires, come from different backgrounds but our passion for cooking and food brings us together. Todays guest is one such passionate food blogger. Rafeeda or Rafi as I call her is one the most supportive blogger you would come across-ever. She is a busy working mom and yet never forgets to comment on your blog and all social networking sites-if you know her, I am sure you must agree with me 100%.

When I asked her to be my guest she happily agreed. Rafi, you are one of THE most sweet person, there is something every postivite about you that I truly respect. Keep up the good work. Some recipes that I would love to try from her blog are Fluffy Biscuit PuddingElyanchi, Carrot Rice Kheer and ofcourse many more. Today, as a guest blogger she bring before us Malabar Vegetable Biriyani and I am so happy to announce Merry Tummy loves The Big Sweet Tooth.

Over to Rafi....

My interaction with Shweta started with my participation in the Saturday Snapshots. From then on, it has been a very cordial and warm relationship. I have always liked her frank comments for my photographs, whether positive or negative. She always would give ideas to improve on the overall blogging experience. I was very happy when she asked me for a guest post – especially when I love her pictures and I feel inferior as far as mine is concerned! I always feel that my pictures are very normal, especially knowing how lazy I am to improve on them. I know that if I put my heart in, I would be able to improve quite a bit but somehow my laziness and lack of time creeps in. So when she asked me for a guest post, I was determined to try to do the best I would be able to do!

A little introduction to myself – my name is Rafeeda and I blog at “The Big Sweet Tooth”. My blog name is synonymous to what I am actually – a big sweet tooth! I love sweet stuff in any form and love to whip them up, from smoothies to desserts! I am based in the multicultural UAE, very well known for the city of Dubai, and have been a part of this colorful city almost all my life. My foodie instincts have been boosted by the innumerable chai shops and shawarma outlets that are available in every nook and corner of this country! I love to cook and bake as it releases a lot of stress, thanks to my busy life as a working mother, to two beautiful girls. 

The first thing Shweta reminded me of while working on the guest post, was that it must be vegetarian! Actually, that was the first thing that had popped in my thought as well! At the moment, I had nothing in my mind apart from making some biriyani with loads of vegetables! In our household, like a typical non-vegetarian family, biriyani is never associated with vegetables or even eggs! It is quite disappointing that I have never cooked a biriyani with vegetables, apart from this Nawabi style biriyani and I was hell bent at making one for Shweta, for her post. 

Yes, I did have to make a non-vegetarian side, thereby increasing my work in the kitchen, but the satisfaction from having made this biriyani was amazing. I referred to the recipe from “Classic  Malabar Recipes” by Faiza Moosa and adapted it to our taste and my previous experience with other biriyanis. I must say that this was a really flavorful biriyani, which received a very good feedback from the folks at home and was wiped off, much more than my expectation! The list of ingredients may look scarily long, however it is a breeze to make, once all the chopping is done! Off to the way I made it…Malabar Vegetable Biriyani

Serves 4

2 potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 cups chopped french beans
1 cup frozen green peas 
1 tbsp ghee
2 cardamom
1 bay leaf
1 pc cinnamon
6-10 peppercorns
1 star anise
2 cloves
1 large onion, sliced
4 green chillies, slit
1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
2 meduim tomatoes, chopped
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 tsp Kashmiri chilli powder
1/2 tsp fennel powder
3 tbsp yogurt
Salt to taste
2 cups basmati rice
A pinch of turmeric
For dum:
3 tbsp ghee
2 small onions, sliced
8-10 cashew nuts
10-15 raisins
3 tbsp chopped coriander leaves
3 tbsp chopped mint leaves
2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp pineapple essence (optional)
1 tbsp rosewater

  1. In a saucepan, boil lot of water. Add the potatoes, carrots and bean and boil till the vegetables
  2. are 50% done. Add the frozen green peas and cook further till they are cooked up to 80%, ie. When you bite in, there would be a slight rawness. Drain the vegetables and set aside.
  3. In a large saucepan, heat ghee. Fry the whole masalas for a couple of minutes. Add in the onion and green chillies and sauté till it becomes soft. 
  4. Add the ginger-garlic paste and cook till the raw smell is gone. Add the tomatoes and cook till the tomatoes get totally mashed up. 
  5. Add in the masala powders and sauté till it gets a nice dark color. Add in the cooked vegetables and yogurt and mix well till incorporated. 
  6. Add in the salt and cook for a couple of minutes. Switch off. 
  7. Meanwhile, wash the basmati rice several times till clean. Boil water in a large pan with a pinch of turmeric and salt. 
  8. Add the rice and cook for around 10 minutes or till the rice is 80% cooked –when you bite a grain, there would be a little grainy taste. Immediately drain the rice and wash in cold water. Set aside. Let us do the dum ingredients. 
  9. Heat ghee in a fry pan and fry the onions till crisp. Drain and set aside. Fry the cashew nuts and puff up the raisins. Drain and keep along with the fried onion. Heat a tawa for doing the dum. For a detailed step-by-step of how to do your dum, you can refer to this post of mine! 
  10. On top of the prepared vegetable masala, sprinkle in half of the fried items, along with half the coriander and mint leaves, as well as the garam masala. Put the rice on top of the masala. Sprinkle in the rest of the remaining dum ingredients. 
  11. Drizzle the ghee used to fry the onion, along with the rose water and pineapple essence, if using. Cover the saucepan tightly and close the lid. 
  12. Keep on dum for 15-20 minutes on medium-low flame. Switch off and leave undisturbed for another 15 minutes. Take off the foil cover and give in a nice mix with a spatula, ensuring that the rice doesn’t break and the vegetables are intact.
  13. Serve hot with some pickle, chammanthi and raita.

Thank you from Merry Tummy :)

If you wish to be my guest please send me an email at


  1. Thank you so much for having me around dear... it was such a pleasure working on this post for you and so glad to know u loved it... :) :) :)

  2. this is a lovely guest post by Rafee ...recipe is really awesome

  3. Hi Shweta. ...landed here from Rafeeda's blog. ...a good collection of vegetarian delights...beautiful clicks

  4. a flavorful and yummy biryani..lovely guest post girls

  5. This Vegetable Biryani looks exotic and delicious! YUM! :)

  6. lovely guest post dearies,looks delicious!!

  7. Thats a delicious biryani rafee.Yes shewta she is so sweet

  8. Very delicious looking biryani! Keep it up girls! Great collaboration!

  9. Lovely guest post frm a l0vely lady...

  10. A wonderful guest post by a wonderful blogger

  11. This Vegetable Biryani is looking very delicious. Thanks to Rafeeda and you for this excellent guest post.


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