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Side gravy for Biryani

Recreating restaurant style food at home is fun but can be frustrating when the same flavor cannot be replicated at home. In most restaurants, while ordering biryani, they serve a gravy to go with it. The gravy that accompanies the biryani differs from restaurant to restaurant. Often at home we try to recreate this subtly spiced gravy at home but with little success. Today’s recipe came close to the restaurant flavor, a vegetarian version with absolutely no meat in it and goes well with vegetable biryani and pulao as well.

Side Gravy for Biryani Recipe
Prep: 10 mts Cooking: 30 mts
Serves 4-5 persons
Cuisine: South Indian

  • 3-4 cloves
  • 1 elachi
  • 1″ cinnamon
  • 2 onions, finely chopped or sliced
  • 1 1/2 tsps ginger-green chilli-garlic paste
  • 3-4 small tomatoes, quartered or make a + sign on each, leaving them whole
  • 1 tsp red chilli pwd
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric pwd
  • 1/2 tsp coriander pwd
  • pinch of cumin pwd
  • large pinch garam masala pwd
  • salt to taste
  • few curry leaves
  • 2-3 tbsps thick coconut milk
  • 1 1/2 tbsps oil
  • chopped coriander leaves for garnish

Dry roast for 2 mts and grind to a paste:

  • 1 tsp khus khus
  • 3 tbsps grated fresh coconut
  • 2-3 cashew nuts


  1. Heat oil in a heavy bottomed vessel, add cloves, cinnamon and cardamom and saute for a few secs. Add onions and fry till transparent. Add ginger-green chilli-garlic paste and saute for 3 mts. Add curry leaves, red chilli pwd, turmeric pwd, coriander pwd, cumin pwd and combine. Add the quartered tomatoes and fry for 4-5 mts.
  2. Add the ground paste and cook for 5 mts, stirring so that it does not stick to the vessel.
  3. Add 2 cups of water and salt and bring to a boil. Cook with lid on simmer till the gravy thickens. Add thick coconut milk and combine. Turn off heat. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves. Turn off heat.
  4. Serve with pulao, biryani, coconut rice or rotis.


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