I find solace in cooking but the cooking is intimidating when it is for a group of people who know their food, who are known food enthusiasts and more importantly who love their food! Well, yes, cooking intimidated me a few days back 🙂 ! I made a big batch of Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari during Durga puja this year for the family as well as for a gathering at home and I was not sure whether it will be liked by the lot or not. Apart from Mehebub and Pasta, my friends ( Mohamushkil Man, Indrajit Lahiri & Family; Mr & Mrs. Pikturenama, Anindya & Madhushree; and Madame Poutpretty Dolon) were my Gunea Pig for the tasting session 😛 .
A recipe, for which I don’t have any first-hand reference is Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari. It is not that I have not had Tehari before but I never had the Bangladeshi version of it before prepared by somebody from Bangladesh. I have tried almost 5 recipes available over the internet ( most of which are of famous Bangladeshi Beef Tehari though) to make my version of Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari before coming up with my version. Okay, Praises were there and I found that from the expression of the bunch of Kiddos having the food. Pasta had all the five version (oh my poor girl). However, Pasta, Tugga and Dhunchu enjoyed their portion and that was enough for me!
I am sharing the recipe, for the ratio of 1 Kg rice and 1.5 Kg mutton. While making, if you are planning for a lesser quantity, just reduce quantities accordingly.
Though the recipes are almost similar with little difference, where a few prefer adding Curd and a few not. Another difference in the use of spices I found. However, my version of Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari or Bangladeshi Tehari is having Curd.
Coming to the history, Tehari is a dish of Indian origin. However, the difference is, in India, we make Tehari mostly without adding animal protein in it. The yellowish color is another characteristic. Hyderabadi Tehri or Tehari is enormously popular and probably prepared back the time of 2nd world war keeping in mind the vegetarians. To be precise, the dish came into existence thanks to the Hindu residences from Hyderabad who were vegetarian.
While in India, Tehri/ Tehari is signified by the yellowish color of rice, in Bangladesh it is a variant of Biryani. Meat is commonly used over there in Tehari. In fact, Dhaka city is famous for the Beef Tehari.
The recipe, I am sharing is for Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari, however, you can replace Beef with Mutton while making it.
Here go a few details, which I consider important while making Bangladeshi Tehari. In Bangladesh, they use Kalojeera or Kalijeera rice to make Tehari. I, though, used good quality Basmati to make Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari as I was not available with Kalijeera rice here. The meat pieces must have some fat with them, as the fat gives extra taste and moisture to the dish. The meat chunks must be smaller as compared to biryani pieces (you can refer the picture below). In fact, this is one major difference between Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari and typical Bangladeshi Kacchi Biryani.
I understand from different recipes available for Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari, not much spices are used. However, if you limit the use of Fat ( Oil and Ghee) that will limit the taste quotient as well. A bit complicated, but this flavorful Rice preparation is worth cooking and cherishing for sure!
- Mutton: 1.5 Kg (smaller chunks; with fat)
- Basmati/ Kalijeera Rice: 1 Kg
- Onion: 750g
- Ginger Paste: 1.5 Tbsp.
- Garlic Paste: 2 Tbsp.
- Green Chilli: 15-20
- Sour Curd: 200g
- Black Pepper Powder: 1 Tsp.
- Sugar: 1 Tsp. (optional)
- Salt: to Taste
- Milk Powder: 2 Tbsp.
- Oil: 400 ml
- Ghee: 3 Tbsp.
- Keora Water: 3-4 drops
- Cinnamon: 2"
- Black Cardamom: 2
- Nutmeg: 1
- Mace: 3-4 strings
- Sahi Jeera: ½ Tsp.
- Black Pepper: 8-10
- Clove: 8-10
- Wash Mutton chunks under running water and leave aside.
- Wash Rice and soak in water for 15 minutes.
- Drain the water from rice after 15 minutes.
- Now divide the Onion into three portions.
- Make a smooth paste of one portion of the Onion.
- Cut another portion thinly and leave aside for further use.
- Cut the remaining into thin slice to make Onion crisp or "Piaj Beresta".
- Heat Oil in a deep bottom pan and fry the onion for 6-7 minutes or until those turn brown and crisp to make Onion crisp or "Piaj Beresta".
- Keep the Onion crisp aside as well.
- Take Cinnamon, Black Cardamom, Nutmeg, Mace: 3-4 strings, Sahi JeeraBlack Pepper and Clove and grind to make a coarse powder.*
- Whatever amount of Masala prepared, the Tehari with 1 Kg rice and 1.5 kg meat requires 2 Tsp. full masala.
- Take the Oil along with 1 Tbsp. Ghee in a deep bottom pan and heat properly.
- Now add Onion slice and Onion paste and cook till the onion turns Brownish in color.
- Add Ginger paste and Garlic paste along with 10 slit Green Chillies and cook till the spices leave the edges.
- Now add Sour Curd and mix thoroughly.
- Cook in low flame till curd mixes properly and oil separates.
- Add 1 Tsp. of Salt, Sugar and Black pepper Powder.
- Now add 1 Tsp. of the Special Garam Masala prepared and mix.
- Add Mutton Chunks and, mix properly using a spatula.
- Start cooking on low flame without adding Water. Mutton will release water.
- Cover the pan with a lid and cook for around 30-40 minutes or till mutton soften.
- Stir in between.
- Once the Mutton is cooked completely, keep on cooking on high flame to reduce the water content. (refer picture).
- Switch the flame off and give the cooked mutton a stand of 10 minutes.
- You will find, there are lots of oil with the mutton.
- Strain the mutton and remaining gravy from the Oil.
- Take the Strained Oil in a Deep bottom vessel and heat it.
- Add Soaked rice and fry in low flame for 5-7 minutes till the granules look glossy.
- Add 1.5 Lit of Hot Water to the rice.
- Now mix Milk Powder with ½ Cup of Boiling water and add that too.*
- Mix using a spatula.
- Add 1-1.5 Tsp. of Salt.
- Cover the Vessel with a Lid and cook on medium flame for around 15 minutes or till rice is almost ⅔ done.
- Don't mix much while the process going on.
- Once the rice soaked ⅔ of the water, add Cooked Mutton and remaining gravy.
- Add 1 Tsp. of the Special Garam Masala and 10 Slit Green Chilli.
- Lightly Mix everything and cover the pan with a lid.
- Now place a Tawa or Pan over lower heat and put the Vessel over the Tawa.
- Cook on low flame for 15 minutes without opening the lid.
- Switch the flame off and leave the Pot as it is for 10 minutes.
- Open the Lid and add Ghee, Keora Water Fried Onion Crisp and give the Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari a light mix.
- The water must be completely soaked by then.
- Serve Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari hot with a choice of side.
* Instead of Milk Powder normal milk can also be used; however Milk Powder gives extra richness.
I have used Vegetable Oil which can be replaced with Mustard Oil.
You can add Vegetables such as Peas and Potato, even boiled egg too
What goes well with Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari:
Have you tried the Bangladeshi Mutton Tehari Recipe from Debjanir Rannaghar!
Do let me know how it came out. Also, I would love to see a picture of the same which you can share here on firstname.lastname@example.org. In Instagram, you can use my hashtag #debjanirrannaghar or can tag me at @foodofdebjani.