First soak dried red chilies in water for minimum 30 minutes.
Then grind it into a thick paste by adding very little water. Keep aside.
Clean and wash chicken.
Wash jeera samba rice and soak in water for minimum 30 minutes.
Boil 3 liters of water in a large dish. Once water start to boil, add 1 tspn of salt and 1 tspn of oil and then add the soaked jeera rice.
Cook it until it’s ¾th done. This is very important, do not over cook or fully cook the jeera rice, as we would be making biryani on dum you need the rice to be ¾ done.
Once ¾ cooked, drain all the water and keep the cooked rice aside.
Heat oil in a deep bottomed pan(I used pressure cooker). Add 1 tspn of curd and mix well. Be careful here the curd will splutter.
Then add cloves, cinnamon, bay leaves and cardamom and mix.
Next add 2 tbspns of sliced onions and mix.
Add ginger-garlic paste and saute until the raw smell of the paste is gone.
Add chicken and cook until the color of the chicken turns white.
Then add 1 tbspn of chopped coriander and mint leaves and mix. The aroma of fresh herbs cooking in oil is so amazing.
Next add chopped onions and tomatoes and cook it until the tomatoes turn soft.
Add ground red chili paste, salt to taste and mix well.
Cook for another 5 minutes on medium flame.
Add remaining curd, mix. Let it cook for another 2 minutes.
By now the chicken should be ¾ cooked. Now it’s time to layer and put the biryani on dum cooking.
I removed half of the chicken gravy mix into another bowl before adding the rice, as I wanted more layers. If you wish you can make just 1 layer.
Add half of the cooked rice on top of the chicken layer, sprinkle coriander and mint leaves.
Now add the second layer, by adding the chicken gravy we removed. Level it as much possible.
Add the remaining rice, level it out.
Place the dish on low heat, cover it and place a heavy item on top of the plate to trap the steam inside(I know this is not the authentic dum, but at home this is what is convenient)
Let biryani cook for 20 minutes on dum heat.
Ambur Star Biryani is ready. The biryani has a different dimension due to the jeera samba rice. The texture and the taste of this biryani is lip smacking good.
Serve hot with onion raita and boiled egg. HEAVEN!