Shah Jahani Pullao

Course: Main

Servings: 6 people

Prep Time: 60 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

  • lamb leg bone - 1
  • fresh ginger - 1 inch (coarsely chopped)
  • garlic - 5 cloves
  • green cardamom pods - 5
  • cinnamon stick - 2 inch
  • whole cloves - 6
  • black peppercorns - 12
  • bay leaf -
  • water - 5-7 cups
  • Maldon sea salt - tsp
  • onions - 2 (halved and thinly sliced)
  • fresh ginger - 1 inch (finely minced)
  • garlic - 5 cloves
  • vegetable oil - 3 tbsp (or coconut oil)
  • coriander seed - 1.5 tbsp (freshly ground)
  • cumin seed - 1 tbsp (freshly ground)
  • cayenne pepper - 1/4 tsp
  • ground turmeric - 1/4 tsp
  • Maldon sea salt - 1 tsp
  • Basmati rice - 2 cups
  • lamb broth - 2 cups
  • water - 1.5 cups
  • Maldon sea salt - 3/4 tsp
  • ghee - 1 tbsp
  • fresh ginger - 1 inch
  • green serrano chiles - 2 small
  • green cardamom pods - 5
  • black cardamom pods - 5
  • plain yogurt - 1 cup
  • cream - 1 cup (lightly whipped)
  • kewra water - 1 tbsp (or rose water)
  1. To prepare the stock, put all the ingredients into a large stock pot. Bring to the boil; turn down the heat and simmer for 3-4 hours. Let cool. Discard the solids & refrigerate.
  2. To prepare the lamb, heat the oil over high heat in a large saucepan or pot & add the onions. Saute for 5-6 minutes, stirring frequently so they caramelize evenly. You may want to add a splash of water now and then to even out the color and keep from burning. Add the ginger and garlic and continue to saute for a minute or so. Add the lamb and brown for 15-20 minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Add the coriander, cumin, cayenne, turmeric, salt and ½ cup water. Mix well & reduce heat. Cover and simmer for about 1 and 1/2 hours. Check from time to time and add water if necessary. When the meat is for tender, set aside. If preparing a day ahead, cool and then refrigerate. The next day bring to room temperature before proceeding.
  4. To prepare the rice, split the green chiles in half & remove the seeds if you don't like things too hot. Slice the chiles into thin half moons; julienne the ginger & set these aside. Open the green and black cardamom pods and remove the seeds; discard the husks and put seeds aside.
  5. Remove stock from the fridge and skim off the fat. Heat the butter in a large skillet fitted with a good lid. Tilt the melted butter to the side to form a pool & add the green and black cardamom seeds. Level the pan and add the rice. Saute for a minute or two and add the stock, water and salt. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 8 minutes. Remove from heat & let stand, covered for 5 minutes. Toss in the green chiles and ginger – fluffing with a fork as you go. Spread the rice on a large baking sheet to cool.
  6. To assemble the dish, preheat the oven to 180C. Use an 8-10 inch casserole with a well fitting cover. Butter the casserole as you would for a cake. Layer ¼ of the rice on the bottom. Spread the lamb over the rice & cover with another ¼ of the rice. Whisk the yogurt lightly & spread over the rice. Layer another ¼ of the rice; spread with the whipped cream & cover with the remaining rice. Sprinkle with the kewra or rose water and cover. Place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
  7. You can serve this straight from the pan, or turn it out onto a heat proof platter and decorate with edible silver leaf to make a show of it.