I used Shan spice mix for this Fish Biryani. You can get a variety of Shan spices from either Middle Eastern or Indian stores. Nowadays Cub Foods and other retailers are also carrying them–although their variety is small.
You will need:
1) 2 7oz salmon steaks quartered (you can actually use any fish you like but you want one that holds up and does not break easily. Fresh tuna would be another good choice)
2) 1 1/2 cups of Basmati rice
3) one medium sized onion cut into thin slices
4) 3 small patatoes halved
5) 4 cloves of garlic minced
6) 2 tblsp of plain yoghurt
7) Juice of 1 whole lemon
2 tblsp of finely chopped dill (DILL AND FISH ARE A MATCH MADE IN HEAVEN)
9) 2 tblsp Oilive Oil
10) Salt for the water you will boil the rice in
11) 1-2 tblsp (depending on how spicy you would like it) of Fish Biryani Shan Spice Mix
Boil some water with salt–when it comes to a boil add the rice and let it cook until ALMOST done. Run it through a sieve and keep the rice aside while you make the sauce.
Sautee the onions and patatoes in the olive oil until the onions are golden brown. Add the fish, lemon, and spice mix together and let cook for about 3 minutes. Add the youghurt, 1 tblsp of dill, and 1/4 cup of water and let cook for about 5 minutes under low heat. THERE IS NO SALT IN THIS MIXTURE BECAUSE THE SHAN MIX IS ALREADY SALTY.
Once the fish is cooked through and the sauce has thickened. Take an oven dish (8x8in) and place the sauce in the bottom and the spread the rice on top. Sprinke with a little additional water (about a quarter of a cup as we need the half cooked rice to cook completely). Cover with foil and place in a 350 degree oven for about half an hour.
Spoon onto a serving dish, and gently toss so the two layers combine to give you the radiant orange and yellow hues that this dish offers. It is as pleasing to the eye as it is the palate. Sprinke with a tblsp of dill and serve with raiti (cucumber sauce)
For the raiti or cucumber yoghurt sauce–grate 4 baby cucumbers with a cheese grate and squeeze all the water out of it. You an put it in a sieve and squeeze it between your fingers. If you miss this step your raiti will become watery and flavorless. You can either use sour cream or yoghurt or a combination of both that I think works best.
Place the grated cucumber in a bowl, add 4 tblsp of yoghurt, 1 tsp of white vinegar, squeeze in a little lemon, sprinke of salt and pepper. Mix together and enjoy. you can also add some finely chopped cilantro, dill or mint.