Turkey Biriyani

Forget turkey sandwiches, and make this lightly-spiced rice dish instead. The addition of fragrant rosewater makes this meal extra special.

  • Christmas


  • 5 tbsp groundnut oil
  • 3 large onions, thinly sliced
  • 50g shelled whole cashew nuts
  • 25g raisins
  • 2 tbsp Veeraswamy Medium Moglai or Gujarat Masala Curry Paste
  • 400g cooked turkey or chicken, cut into cubes
  • 690g jar Cooks' Ingredients Chopped Tomatoes with Onion & Basil
  • 250g basmati rice
  • 3 green cardamoms, lightly crushed
  • 1 Cooks' Ingredients Cinnamon Stick, broken
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 3 cloves
  • Pinch saffron strands
  • A few drops Star Kay White Rose Water


  1. Heat 2 tbsp of the oil in a large flameproof casserole dish, add one third of the onions and fry for 3-4 minutes until they start to brown. Add the cashew nuts and fry for a further 2-3 minutes. Remove the onions and nuts with a slotted spoon, mix with the raisins and leave until required.
  2. Lower the heat, add a further 1 tbsp oil and cook the remaining onions with the curry paste in the pan, covered, for about 10 minutes, until the onions are very soft. Add the turkey and stir-fry for 2-3 minutes, then add the chopped tomatoes and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.
  3. Wash the rice in a sieve until the water runs clear and drain thoroughly. Heat the remaining oil in a wide saucepan with a lid, add the spices, except for the saffron, and cook for a few seconds. Add the washed rice and stir-fry for 3-4 minutes. Add 600ml of boiling water, season, and return to the boil. Stir very briefly, then cover and simmer over a moderate heat for 10-12 minutes, until all the water is absorbed. Steep the saffron in the rose water with 1 tbsp hot water.
  4. Take the turkey off the heat and season, to taste. Scatter one third of the fried onion mixture over the turkey, then top with half the rice. Scatter half the remaining onions on top with half of the saffron and rose water. Repeat with the remaining rice, onions, saffron and rose water.
  5. Cover the pan with a tightly fitting lid and cook over a very gentle heat for 10 minutes. Alternatively, place in a hot oven at 200°C, gas mark 6 for 10 minutes. Serve with roughly chopped fresh coriander.
  • Preparation time: 15 minutes
  • Cooking time: 60 minutes
  • Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes 60 minutes 15 minutes

Serves: 6

Nutritional Info

Typical values per serving:

Energy 2200.784kJ
Fat 23.6g
Saturated Fat 4.6g
Sugars 12.8g
Salt 0.9g

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4 stars

Average user rating Based on 7 ratings

This recipe was first published in Tue Nov 01 00:00:00 GMT 2005.