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Biryani is a desi dish that feels like it has been around for ever; being ever present in every major dinner you attend or even at weddings. Though in truth the dish finds its origins from quite far away.

Biryani is thought to have originally come from Persia, making its way to the sub-continent through different routes via traders and immigrants.

The name “Biryani” is derived from the persian word “Birian”, which means to fry or to roast. During the 18th and 19th centuries, the dish gained popularity during the Mughal rule in Lucknow and Hyderabad, both regions having their own special varieties of Biryani. It was during this period that Biryani came to be considered as a royal dish for Nawabs (Nobles) and Nizams (Governors or Administrators).

Over time, the popularity of the dish has spawned several variants of it that were invented in the different regions it propagated to. You have Sindhi Biryani which makes use of yogurt in the recipe (a common ingredient in Sindhi dishes), Bombay Biryani; which has a lot of spices and uses kevra as an ingredient or Lucknowi biryani in which the rice and meat are half cooked separately and then together until they are fully cooked via the Dum method.

Biryani is found on the menus of almost every desi restaurant, wedding or food event and is considered to be one of the most tasteful dishes to come out of the sub-continent regions of India and Pakistan.