I made my yummy version of a Yakhni Pulao tonight, a traditional Kashmiri and Pakistani rice dish in which the spiced meat stock used to flavour the rice is the star of the show. (Yakhni means soup or broth)
Taste Atlas describes Yakhni pulao as a traditional rice-based dish with Persian origins, that over the years made its way from Moghul cuisine to India, where it’s especially popular in regions such as Kashmir and Uttar Pradesh. The yakhni stock can be made with chicken or lamb.
Yakhni Pulao is known for unique flavours created by simmering the chicken or meat in a stock of whole spices such as green and black cardamom, cumin seeds, black peppercorns, fennel seed, cloves and star anise. I used curry leaves instead of bay leaves adding their distinct flavour to the stock, but bay leaves are more traditionally used.
I made it with lamb bone-in lamb chump chops with all the fat cut away and diced into small pieces. I simmered the lamb in water and spices for 35 minutes until the lamb was tender and a rich stock had been created.
Whilst the list of spices is long, the actual Yakhni Pulao is easy to make and the delicious aromas which fill the kitchen while the meat is cooking are a great indicator of the tastes to come.
The finished dish is enhanced by spicy sides, pickles and salads. I made Spicy Indian Mint and Coriander Chutney, Indian Carrot Salad and a Cucumber Kachumber salad. Recipes to come too!