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Kamini Pather's Cauliflower Rice Lamb Biriyani with Leopard's Leap Chescato

Kamini Pather's Cauliflower Rice Lamb Biriyani with Leopard's Leap Chescato

I LOVE a good biriyani. Whether it's meat or vegetables, the unctuous flavours that seep into the hero ingredients always leave a person feeling deeply satisfied. The fact that everything is cooked on low heat, over a few hours and then topped with rice to steam through makes this layered dish feel like opening a present - the anticipation is palpable!

In its own rite, biriyani is a perfect dish, but I always want to eat it more often during my day-to- day life. But one of the issues I have with this dish is that recipes always cater for a family-sized portion AND more often than not, I am only cooking for 2. The other issue is the daring use of double carbs. The days of manual labour are SO done, friend. I don't need to be eating rice AND potato in the same dish.

This cauliflower rice biriyani merges the worlds of intensely flavourful lamb that is marinated over-night with the light and lower carbohydrate count in the cauliflower. It also increases the number of veggies in this dish, adding another notch to your 5-a-day count.

Don't be alarmed, while this recipe takes two days to prepare; the first day is really just creating the marinade and allowing time to have its way with the lamb - no grunt work from you. And the next day is a cinch. Believe me; THIS will be worth it.

Cauliflower Rice Lamb Biriyani Recipe

Serves 2

The night before ingredients
1 red onion (110g)
1⁄4 cup vegetable oil
400g lamb, shoulder with bone in

1⁄4 tsp somph
1⁄2 tsp jeera
1 tbsp masala
2 red chillies
1 tsp garam masala 1 clove garlic (6g) 3g ginger, grated

1 elachi
2cm stick of cinnamon
2 cloves whole
1 whole tinned tomato, squashed (70g) 1tsp lemon juice
1 tsp salt, depending on taste
1tbsp brown lentils soaked overnight

Method

Slice the red onion and allow to fry in the coconut oil for 20-25 minutes until golden. Drain and set aside.

Chop the lamb into bite-sized cubes. Rinse and allow to drain in a colander.

In a pestle and mortar, grind the oomph and jeera spices with the chilli, garlic and ginger. To this paste, add the tomato and lemon juice. Crumble half the onions into the marinade. Season to taste before pouring over the lamb. Add the whole spiced, cinnamon, clove and elachi. Place in refrigerator overnight. Easy peasy.

The next day ingredients
150g potato, skin on
1tsp fine slat
pinch of turmeric powder
400g cauliflower (400g grated) 3 tbsp coconut oil

55g red onion, sliced 1⁄3 red onions that you fried yesterday 1⁄4 tsp salt
60ml yoghurt 1⁄4 cup
2 tbsp warm water

6 strands saffron Mint, 2 sprigs

Method
Take the lamb out of the fridge at least 1 hour before you cook it.

Heat oven to 180C. Mix the potatoes with the salt and turmeric and bake for 25-30minutes. Set aside.

Boil soaked brown lentils for 2-3 minutes until soft. Drain and reserve for later.

Heat 1 tbsp of the coconut oil to pouring consistency. Grate the cauliflower. You may grate the stems as well. Spread out onto a baking sheet and pour over the coconut oil. Sprinkle with salt. Bake for 20-25minutes until some of the tips are lightly singed.

Place the saffron into the warm water and allow to sit on the counter.

Mix the yoghurt into the lamb. Heat 2 tbsp of coconut oil in a heavy-bottomed pan. Topple the lamb into the pot and place spring of mint into the pot. Divide the lentils across the top of the contents and allow to simmer gently for 40-45minutes until the meat is soft.

When the cauliflower rice is done, layer over the meat and spread the rest of the onions over the top. Pour the saffron water over the cauliflower rice and allow to cook for another 10-15minutes. The water must evaporate completely before serving.

To serve:

Separate the cauli-rice from the meat and potatoes. Serve with pomegranate and cucumber raita (100 g cucumber) and of course refreshing glasses of the Leopard's Leap Chescato

ABOUT THE CHEF:

Kamini, pronounced like ‘harmony’ started her career in the food industry when she won the second season of MasterChef SA. Since then she has been the host of and an executive producer on her SAFTA winning food-travel show, Girl Eat World. GEW was broadcast locally on SABC 3 and the Food Network, as well as on Netflix North America and is currently being flight globally on Discovery World, as well as being available to stream via ShowMax.  

Kamini has a Bachelor of Commerce degree, a diploma in Copy Writing and a WSET 2 certification. 

 Since winning MasterChef SA, Kamini has won a few media wards which include an SA Style Award and as well as a Glamour Women Of The Year Award. Kamini has hosted radio segments on some of the well-loved radio stations in the Western Cape, GoodHopeFM and HeartFM, as well as 2 Oceans Vibe Radio and Cliff Central. She was a guest judge on Top Chef, has an online cookery course with Yuppie Chef and has contributed to the monthly meals at Ucook.  

Besides cooking, Kamini is a 2 time CT Marathon runner and a qualified yoga instructor. She believes that one should only trust a skinny chef and lives her life accordingly.  

During lockdown, Kamini has been cooking up a storm in her home kitchen and capturing the moments through video and image content creation, using brands that she would normally keep in her pantry. She’s compiled a concise collection of Indo-fusion recipes that are the cross over of her Indian food heritage and her global food travels into an ebook, Eat Glocal. She believes in quick, healthy and delicious food that are carb-conscious and made for small batch cooking. 

Photography by Crush Magazine

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