- Prawns – 500 g
- Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
- Chilly powder – 1 tsp
- Lime juice – 1 tsp
- Salt – To Taste
For the masala
- Onion – 3 large, thinly sliced
- Tomato – 2 medium, chopped
- Fresh ginger-garlic paste – 1 1/2 tbsp
- Green chillies – 5-7, pasted
- Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
- Yogurt – 2 tbsp
- Garam masala – 1 tsp + 1/2 tsp to sprinkle while layering
- Mint leaves – 8-10, chopped
- Coriander leaves – 1/2 cup, chopped
- Salt – To taste
- Oil – As required
- Basmati rice – 2 cups
- Cloves – 5
- Cardamom – 2
- Cinnamon stick : 2 small pieces
- Bay leaf – 1
- Pepper corns – 10
- Fennel seeds – 1/2 tsp
- Salt to taste
- Ghee to sprinkle while layering rice
First prepare the prawn masala
- Clean and wash the prawns.
- Marinate the prawns with the ingredients under marinade for at least 1 hr in the refrigerator.
- Heat oil in a large non-stick pan and shallow fry the prawns for 4-5 minutes. Do not overcook, prawns become hard. Remove and keep aside.
- In the same pan, add thinly sliced onion along with salt to left over oil (add more if you want) and saute until they are soft and light golden brown.
- Add the ginger-garlic and green chilli paste and saute till the raw smell goes.
- Add the chopped tomatoes and turmeric powder and cook until tomatoes get mashed up.
- Add in the yogurt and mix it well. Add the fried prawns, cover and cook on low flame for 5 minutes.
- Add the 1/4 cup chopped coriander leaves (reserve 1/4 cup for layering), mint leaves and 1 tsp garam masala. Cover and cook for another 3 minutes. Remove from fire and keep aside.
For preparing the rice
- Wash the rice , soak for 30 minutes and drain.
- Boil enough water in a deep vessel to cook 2 cup rice.
- Add the whole spices and enough salt to the boiling water.
- Add the rice and cook till it is done. Drain the water immediately.
Layering and final cooking
- Mix 2 saffron strands in 1 tbsp warm milk and keep it aside.
- Take a large heavy based vessel and smear the base with ghee.
- Spread a layer of rice in the bottom of the vessel and pour prawn masala over the rice. Now add the rice and repeat the process. Sprinkle 2 tsp ghee , a pinch of garam masala, chopped coriander leaves and saffron milk on each layer of rice. The topmost layer should be of rice.
- Now cover the vessel with an aluminium foil and close the lid and cook on stovetop for about 20-30 minutes at very low heat .
- Just before serving, garnish with fried onions,cashews and raisins. Serve with raita, pickle and pappad.