Biryani masala powder is a blend of whole spices roasted and powdered. This spice blend not only adds the unique flavour but also lends the aroma that’s required for a perfect biryani. Skip the store bought stuff and make this easy biryani masala powder packed with tons of flavour and it’s so simple to make.
What is Biryani
A world renowned one pot rice dish biryani is a rice flavoured with exotic spices and cooked with marinated vegetables/ chicken/ lamb/ prawns. Making a perfect biryani is an art in itself. It takes time and requires a lot of practice but every bit of effort is worth. Meat/vegetables are first marinated in yogurt, herbs and this biryani spice mix. Rice and marinade are arranged in layers with final layer being topped with fried onions, mint, coriander, saffron infused milk, cooked on low flame with lid covered. This exotic biryani spice mix gives complex flavour to biryani. Due to an intense blend of spices, one can feel pronounced depth of flavours and aroma.
Essential spices required to make biryani masala
Each spice has its own aroma and adds its own character to this spice blend.Mace and nutmeg are most common spices in biryani masala powder recipe. Both lend delicate warm and sweet flavour. Cassia bark, cinnamon and cloves are the common spices used in not just biryani masala but most of the Indian spice blends. Whole coriander seeds has a slightly citrus flavour with the notes of sweetness. Dry roasting allows this spice to take on a more nutty and floral aroma as the oils release from the seeds. Cumin is not only an essential spice used for tadka, it is also used for many spice blends. Cumin lends earthy and spicy sweet flavour to the spice mixes.
Necessity to dry roast spices
All the spices are dry roasted until fragrant and grind to a powder. Dry roasting spices generally removes the moisture and release the volatile oil which provides intense flavour to the dish. A perfect blend of freshly ground spice brings out the well-balanced flavours and elements of the dish to tantalise individuals taste buds.
How to make biryani masala (with process shots & video)
1 cup = 240ml ; 1 tbsp: 15ml
Coriander Seeds: 240ml
Cumin: 2 tbsp
Cloves: 1 tbsp
Star anise: 5
Poppy Seeds: 1/4 cup
Crush nutmeg in a mortar-pestle.
Dry roast coriander seeds and cumin on medium low heat for 2 minutes or until fragrant, transfer to a plate.
In the same pan, roast cinnamon, cardamom, star anise, cloves, nutmeg, mace for a minute or until fragrant and transfer them to the plate.
Finally dry roast poppy seeds for a minute and turn off the heat.
Allow the spices to cool down completely and grind them to a powder.
Store in an sterilised air tight glass jar and use as required.
Roast spices just until fragrant and ensure spices do not change the colour.
Roast the spices on medium low flame to avoid over roasting or burning the spices. Keep stirring frequently.
Biryani masala powder remains fresh for 3 months, later it looses its aroma gradually. As I prepare biryani regularly I usually make big batch sufficient to last for nearly 3 months. If you do not intend to make biryani regularly I suggest you to make small batch of masala powder.
1 tsp is sufficient to make a biryani for 2-3 people. Add more if you prefer spicier biryani with intense flavour.
Biryani Masala Powder | Biryani Spice Blend
Gluten free, Nut free,
1 cup = 240ml, 1 tbsp = 15ml
- 1 cup Coriander Seeds
- 2 tbsp Cumin
- 1 tbsp Cloves
- 10 pieces Cinnamon each stick 1 inch
- 5 Star Anise
- 6 Green Cardamom
- 4 Nutmeg
- 2 Mace
- 1/4 cup Poppy Seeds
- Crush nutmeg in a mortar-pestle.
- Dry roast coriander seeds and cumin on medium low heat for 2 minutes or until fragrant, transfer to a plate.
- In the same pan, roast cinnamon, cardamom, star anise, cloves, nutmeg, mace for a minute or until fragrant and transfer them to the plate.
- Finally dry roast poppy seeds for a minute and turn off the heat.
- Allow the spices to cool down completely and grind them to a powder.
- Store in an sterilised air tight glass jar and use as required.
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