Malabar Fish Biriyani

Malabar fish biriyani is a kerala style of making Fish Biriyani.


(For 7 persons)

  • Fish(500 gms)
  • Turmeric powder (1/2 tbsp)
  • Cooking oil(1/3 cup)
  • Onion ( 4 large, chopped)
  • Ginger( 2 inch, chopped)
  • Green chillies (2, split)
  • Coriander powder (3 tbsp)
  • Garam Masala powder (3 tbsp)
  • Chilly powder( 1 tbsp)
  • Turmeric powder (1 tbsp)
  • Tomatoes (5, chopped)
  • Salt (a per taste)
  • Yoghurt (beaten, 1 bowl)
  • Ghee (1 tbsp)
  • Cinnamon sticks (5)
  • Star anise (1)
  • Cardamom (4 pods)
  • Basmati Rice (3 cups)
  • Coriander leaves (chopped, handful)
  • Mint leaves(chopped, handful)
  • Raisins (1/3rd cup, roasted in ghee)
  • Cashews(1/3rd cup, roasted in ghee)


For Fish:

  1. In a bowl, add fish, turmeric powder, mix well and allow it to marinade for 15 minutes.
  2. Heat a pan, add oil, onion and saute till it turns  light golden brown.
  3. Add ginger, green chilies and saute for 1 minute.
  4. Add Garam masala powder, chilly powder, turmeric powder mix well till the aroma spreads.
  5. Add water and saute again.
  6. Add tomatoes and saute for 6 minutes.
  7. Add salt as per taste. Add water(1 cup) and mix well.
  8. Add marinated fish cubes and mix gently and cook for 1 minute.
  9. Add yoghurt, mix well and simmer for 1 minute.
  10. Take it off the flame and keep it aside.

For Rice:

  1. Soak the rice in water for 5 minutes.
  2. Heat another vessel. Add ghee, cinnamon sticks, star anise, cardamom pods, and saute well.
  3. Drain the rice and add it to the spices and stir fry for 1 minute. Take it off the flame and keep it aside.


  1. In another cooking vessel, put a thin layer of stir fried rice.
  2. Above it add the fish and the gravy as the second layer.
  3. Repeat the process for the rest of the fish and rice.
  4. Switch on the flame, add boiling water (salted, 1 tbsp) 1 inch above the rice level and bring it to a boil.
  5. Slow the flame, sprinkle coriander leaves, mint leaves, roasted raisins and cashews.
  6. Close it with a lid and keep some weight over the lid so that the steam won’t escape. This process is known as ‘Dum’.
  7. Keep the rice and fish on Dum for 8 minutes.
  8. Switch off the flame, and keep it for another 10 minutes with the lid closed.
  9. The rice will be cooked and will come out separately. This is the consistency that the biriyani is cooked.

Delicious Malabar Fish Biriyani is now ready to be served. Enjoy!