Yakhni Pulao is a pilaf recipe, rather than a Kashmiri pilaf recipe, made with chicken, mutton, beef (for non-vegetarians), or vegetables (for vegetarian people). For making this pilaf also need good quality basmati rice, a few selected Indian spices, and flavors. Raita (cucumber raita or bundi raita) can be the best side for this pilaf no curry is required.
Today I am making a Kashmiri-style Chicken Yakhni Pulao recipe in a very quick & easy way. Let’s check how to make it at home.
About Yakhni Pulao recipe (Kashmiri Chicken yakhni pulao)
- “Yakhni” means stock or broth in Urdu language, whereas “Pulao” is a preparation of flavored rice, worldwide known as “Pilaf”. So basically Yakhni pulao is a recipe of rice pilaf prepared in a stock or broth.
- That yakhni or broth can be prepared with chicken or mutton or beef, or vegetables. And for making such pulao recipes long-grain basmati rice or pulao rice will be cooked in that particular yakhni.
- Generally, pulao is prepared in a single pot, so like other pulao recipes, from making the stock to cooking rice, yakhni pulao is also prepared in one pot.
- As this pulao is a complete meal so raita or salads can be its best accompaniment. Cucumber raita or boondi raita can be its best sides.
- As per its history, though yakhni(meat stew or stock or broth) is originated in Persia, however, this stock-based pilaf is originated in Afghani cuisine. However, this pulao is reached in India through Kashmiri wazas. Kashmiri wazas are traditional chefs of kashmir who are originally from Persia. However later this puloa recipe passed to the Mughlai cuisine.
- In India, From Hyderabad to Lucknow all have their own versions of pulao recipes prepared with yakhni. However, among those recipes, Kashmiri style yakhni pulao is the most popular in India. Being a traditional recipe of kashmir, it is a part of Kashmiri wazwan. Wazwan means, where several exotic kashmiri dishes are served in a single meal to celebrate special occasions of Kashmir.
- Pakistan and Bangladesh also have almost similar pulao recipes. However, in Bangladesh, it is named “Akhni pulao”. Though there are no huge differences in their ingredients and cooking style with us as its origin is same.
- From making the stock to cooking the rice whole spices or sabut garam masala(shahi jeera/cumin seeds, cloves, black cardamom, black pepper, cinnamon stick, green cardamom, whole coriander seeds, fennel/saunf seeds, star anise, bay leaves) plays a key role in this pulao recipe.
If you are searching for an Indian-style chicken pilaf then you are in a right place. Try this Kashmiri-style pilaf aka Kashmiri-style chicken yakhni pulao recipe. Though it is easy to make at home, however a little time-consuming. But don’t worry, my step-by-step recipe and tricks will help you to get the best result.
Except for this chicken pilaf, if you are looking for some veg pulao recipes, then you may try my –
Yakhni Pulao recipe | Kashmiri yakhni pulao recipe | Kashmiri Chicken yakhni pulao recipe
For Making Yakhni/ Stock
- 600 g Chicken (cut into 100 g pieces)
- 4 cups of water
- 1 tsp shahi jeera/whole cumin
- 4-5 cloves
- 1 black cardamom
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1-inch cinnamon stick
- 4 green cardamom
- 1 tbsp whole coriander
- 1 tsp fennel/saunf
- 6 garlic cloves
- 1-inch ginger
- 1 medium onion (cube cut)
- 1-star anise
- 2 bay leaves
- 1+1/2 tsp salt
For making pulao
- 600 g Basmati rice (soaked for 30 mins)
- 5+1/2 cups of water
- 5 tbsp ghee
- 5 green cardamom
- 8 cloves
- 1 bay leaf
- 1-inch cinnamon stick
- A finely sliced onion(medium)
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 & 1/2 tsp garlic paste
- 6 tbsp curd
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp kewra water(optional)
For making yakhni pulao masala
- 3 green cardamom
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 javitri/mace
- 1/8 jaiphol/nutmeg
Ground the above spices into a powder form.
Prep time: 15 mins
Cooking time: 45 mins
Total time: 1 hr
Servings for: 6 people
course: Main course
Cuisine: Indian Kashmiri
Author: Moumita Paul
How to make Kashmiri chicken yakhni pulao recipe with step by step pictures
Step 1- Making chicken yakhni / chicken stock
- In a pan, take chicken pieces (cleaned & washed ), and add all the ingredients described under “For making yakhni or stock”. Stir it well. Cover it to cook.
- Cook it on medium heat until the chicken is perfectly cooked. Turn off the heat.
- First, take the chicken out from the pan, strain the yakhni or broth to remove the whole spices, and keep it aside.
Step 2- For making Yakhni pulao masala
- Take whole black peppercorn, cardamom, nutmeg, and mace in a grinder or a mortar-pestle.
- Ground it until almost a fine powdered masala forms.
Step 3 – For Cooking Chicken yakhni pulao
- First, heat a pan, add ghee, then fry the onion (finely sliced) in ghee until the onion gets a light golden brown color.
- Then add cardamom, cinnamon, and cloves into the pan and a little saute until release aroma.
- Next, add ginger and garlic paste and fry them well.
- Add well-beaten curd (as shown in pics below), ground yakhni pulao masala, and chicken. Mix it well.
- Fry them well then add salt. Give a good stir.
- Fry the chicken until masalas raw smell goes off and the masala releases aroma.
- Then add rice (washed, soaked in water for 30 mins, and drained the water before using) into the pan.
- Gently mix the rice with the chicken and then add the chicken broth or stock.
- Then again add 2 cups of water to the pan. Stir it well.
- Keep the flame on high and let the water starts to boil.
- Once the water starts boiling, then slow down the heat to its minimum and cover the pan with a tight lid.
- Just after 10 min of cooking, start checking the rice. Once the rice is perfectly cooked and there is no water left in the bottom of the pan, means pulao is ready. Turn off the heat.
- Give it 5 more mins standing time before plating. After 5 mins direct serve this hot chicken yakhni pulao from the pan, with salad or raita, and enjoy.
Tips for making perfect yakhni pulao
- Though for making yakhni, here I directly used the whole spices in water, however, traditionally, in kashmiri cuisine, a piece of cloth is used to tie all the whole spice for making a potli with it called bouquet garni. That boubouquet garni is used in making the yakhni. You can use that spice potli too.
- By applying the same method, you can make any other kashimiri-style pulao recipes too. Then except for the chicken, other ingredients and the whole procedure must be almost the same. Though then the amount of the ingredients may little differ. As for making mutton yakhni pulao, a little more ginger-garlic paste needs to add to remove the raw smell of mutton. Even then you need to use a pressure cooker to perfectly cook the mutton.
- For making this recipe, If are using basmati rice, then thoroughly wash the rice 4-5 times, soak for 30 mins, and then make the rice. Otherwise, rice grains don’t look long. If you’re using pulao rice, then 10-15 mins soaking is enough otherwise the rice may get mushy.
- Authentic kashmiri yakhni pulao is generally prepared with white rice( with basmati rice or pulao rice). However, for health reasons, you may try this recipe with brown rice too.
- If you want to make Kashmiri style yakhni pulao, then don’t use tomato and red chili powder in this recipe. As red chilli powder or tomato is not used in Kashmiri food, even not used in making this pilaf recipe. As that will change the colour and authentic taste of this dish.
- However, if you are planning to make Hyderbadi or awadhi(lucknow) yakhni pulao or even Pakistani or Bangladeshi-style yakhni pilaf recipes, then you may use tomato and red chilli powder too along with all other ingredients.
- Must use that homemade powered masala. That is not only easy to make at home, but it also retains the authentic Kashmiri taste as well.
- For making this kashmiri pulao, with 600 gms chicken and 600 gms(3 cups) of basmati rice, you need to use 5 & 1/2 cups of water including its yakhni. This means I’ve used 3 & 1/2 cups of yakhni with 2 cups of plain water.
- To make the best yakhni pulao, right proportion of rice & water( including yakhni) is most important. That I precisely described in my recipe, so don’t skip any step to make it perfect.