Tuesday, December 1, 2015

What is Good Biryani – 5 Tests

If you walk around Pune – you will find that a “Biryani House” has mushroomed at every nook and corner.

Most of these eateries serve a spicy medley of meat and rice which they pass off as “Biryani”.

This reminds me of a foodie article I had written many years ago on “How to Test a Biryani”.

So – next time you eat a Biryani – test it – to see if it is a Good Biryani.

BIRYANI
Five Essential Qualities of a Good Biryani
Foodie Self-Help
By
VIKRAM KARVE

Nowadays  instead of authentic Biryani  I have seen many restaurants trying to pass off pulaos (and various other medleys and potpourris of meat and rice) as Biryani.

Pulao is not Biryani.

Pulao is prepared by cooking the ingredients together.

In a Biryani the rice and meat are cooked separately  then assembled in layers  and given a dum”.

How do you evaluate a Biryani?

What are the qualities of a good Biryani?

Let me delve into my Foodie Writing Archives and pull out this article I wrote 15 years ago, during my Mumbai days, on TESTING and TASTING a BIRYANI, and post it once more for your perusal.

Happy Biryani Eating

THE PERFECT BIRYANI
Tasting and Testing
By
VIKRAM KARVE

A plate of mouthwatering Biryani is placed in front of you.

On first impressions, how do you judge a Biryani…?

Well, as far as I am concerned, there are five basic tests you must carry out to assess a Biryani.


FIVE TESTS TO JUDGE A BIRYANI


Test No. 1

SPREAD TEST

First try the “Spread Test”.

Pick up a little Biryani in your fingers and sprinkle it on the side dish.

The grains of rice must not stick together but remain separate. 

The pieces of meat must be succulent, clear and dry, not greasy, and easily separate from the rice.

A good Biryani will easily qualify the spread test.


Test No. 2

AROMA TEST

Lift the plate of Biryani and smell the pieces of meat. 

The Biryani must be pleasantly aromatic and you must be able to discern the delicate sweetish fragrance and appetizing mouthwatering aroma of marinated spices.

The aroma must not be overpowering, sharp or piquant. 

The Biryani must pass the “aroma test” with flying colours as there is nothing more appetizing than a mouthwatering aroma…!


Test No. 3

TASTE TEST

Taste the meat, ideally mutton. 

The meat must be well-cooked, flavoursome, succulent, delicious.

Then roll some rice on your tongue – the subtle flavour and taste of the spices must mildly and pleasantly come through, and must not be overpoweringly spicy, greasy or pungent.


Test No. 4

POTATO TEST

Now you come to the fourth test – the “Potato Test”.

Dig deep and search for the potato in the Biryani.

The potatoes must taste as scrumptious as the meat – that is the hallmark of a superlative Biryani.

And if there is no potato – well dear fellow foodie, tell me, can there be a perfect Biryani without a potato which tastes as delicious as the meat…?


Test No. 5

TEMPERATURE TEST

Finally  here is the fifth test for Biryani. 

Has it been served at the right temperature with light aromatic steam coming out from the rice?

Do you feel the warmth on your tongue when you eat the inner part of the mutton?
 

THE PERFECT BIRYANI
 
So  the next time a plate of Biryani is put in front of you  before you eat it  do carry out these simple five tests  and tell us all about it.

Did the Biryani pass all the tests with flying colours? 

Is it a perfect Biryani? 

Or  is it a greasy potpourri of rice and meat  or a Pulao  masquerading as a Biryani?

HAPPY EATING

VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 
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Disclaimer:
1. These are my personal views based on my personal experience. Please do your own due diligence while testing a Biryani.
2. All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the stories are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.

Copyright © Vikram Karve (all rights reserved)

This is an updated and revised version of my article on HOW TO JUDGE A BIRYANI written be me Vikram Karve more than 15 years ago in the year 2000 and posted online earlier in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal Blog on 30 Nov 2010 at url: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2010/11/biryani-how-to-judge-biryani-four-tests.html and reposted a number of times in my various blogs at urls http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2011/05/perfect-biryani-tasting-and-testing.html etc
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