Portobello Mushroom Biryani with Onion Sauce and Date and Fig Chutney

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 45 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Inactive: 10 min
  • Cook: 15 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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1 1/2 cups basmati rice

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 tablespoon curry paste* (recommended: Biryani)

1 teaspoon ground cardamom

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/2 cup dried currants

1/2 cup cashews, toasted

1/2 cup pumpkin seeds, toasted

1/2 cup chopped apricots

1/4 cup crispy shallots

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves

1/4 cup chopped fresh mint leaves

*Can be found in specialty Indian and Sri Lankan stores


6 portobello mushrooms, stemmed and peeled

2 tablespoons olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Onion Sauce, recipe follows

Date and Fig Chutney, recipe follows

Onion Sauce:

1/4 cup unsalted butter

1 cup minced onion 

1 1/2 tablespoons curry paste* (recommended: Biryani) 

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves 

1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom 

1 cup vegetable stock 1 (13 1/2 ounce) can coconut milk 

 1/2 cup soy milk 

1 teaspoon kosher salt 

*Can be found in specialty Indian and Sri Lankan stores 

Date and Fig Chutney:

3/4 cup apple cider

3/4 cup white wine vinegar 

1/2 cup brown sugar 

1 Granny Smith apple, cut into 1/4-inch cubes 

11/2 cups dried dates, chopped 

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped 

2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger 

3 dried figs, cut into 1/4-inch cubes 

1 teaspoon paprika 

1/2 teaspoon ground cardamon 

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt


Special equipment:
a blender
  1. For the rice: Rinse the basmati rice until the water runs clear, soak in warm water for 10 minutes and drain. 
  2. In a large pot of boiling salted water cook the rice until tender, about 6 minutes. 
  3. Meanwhile, in a small pot over medium heat melt the butter with the curry paste, cardamom, and cloves. Drain the rice and toss with the butter mixture until evenly coated. Keep warm until ready to serve. Just before serving add the currants, cashews, pumpkin seeds, apricots, shallots, cilantro, and mint. 
  4. For the mushrooms: Brush the mushrooms with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat, place the mushrooms, tops down, in the skillet and cook for 3 minutes.Turn the mushrooms over and cook for 2 minutes. 
  5. Serve the mushrooms on a bed of rice with Onion Sauce and Chutney.

Onion Sauce:

Yield: 4 cups
  1. In a medium pot melt the unsalted butter over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until golden brown. Add the curry paste, ground cloves, and ground cardamom and cook 30 seconds. Pour in the vegetable stock and coconut milk. Raise the heat to high and simmer for 10 minutes. 
  2. Remove the pot from the heat add the soy milk and kosher salt. Puree in a blender until smooth. 

Date and Fig Chutney:

Yield: 2 cups
  1. In a large pot combine the cider, vinegar, and brown sugar and bring to a boil, over high heat, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Reduce the heat to medium and add in the dates, apple, garlic, and ginger. Cook for 15 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed. 
  2. Stir in the figs, paprika, cardamom, and kosher salt. Store in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 1 month.