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Lucknow/Awadhi Recipes : Yakhni Pulao

Yakhni Pulao from Lucknow and Awadh area is a one pot dish of mutton and rice cooked together and delicately spiced true to its nawabi origin.
Prep Time 45 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4 helping


  • 500 gm mutton
  • 500 gm basmati rice (washed and soaked for 1/2 hour)
  • 4 onions medium
  • 3 - 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 inch ginger
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 1/2 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 5 - 6 black peppercorns
  • 2 cardamom black
  • 2 cardamom green
  • 1 inch cinnamon stick
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 1/2 tbsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • Oil for frying


  • With the help of a mortar and pestle, smash together onion, garlic and ginger roughly. Now mix this with the mutton, fennel, cumin seeds, black peppercorns, black and green cardamom, cinnamon, bay leaf, yogurt and salt. Leave it for marinate it for 4-6 hour or overnight.
  • Next morning, add water to the above and in a heavy bottom pan cook till the meat is tender.
  • Finely slice the rest of the onions. Heat oil in a kadhai and fry the onions. When they turn golden, remove them from the heat and spread them on a kitchen napkin.
  • When the meat is done, strain the pieces from the stock and store the stock for use later.
  • Heat ghee in a wide pan and add half of the fried onions, the ginger garlic paste, red chilli powder and mutton. Fry till the moisture has dried up and the pieces lightly browned.
  • Add the washed and drained rice and fry for 2-3 minutes. Now add enough stock to cover the rice about 3-4 inches above. If you are like me and like to measure water and rice ratio, for every glass of rice a little less than 2 glasses of water/stock works. If you are less on stock add some plain water.
  • Once the water starts boiling, reduce the heat and simmer till the rice is done and dry. Do no overcook.
  • Serve hot garnished with the rest of the fried onions.


This recipe is part of the endeavor to create a collection of recipes of Lucknow/Awadhi Recipes in collaboration with a few bloggers who share the same passion of cooking. All the recipes from #thekitchendivas are pinned on this Pinterest board
Other Lucknow/Awadhi recipes this week from #thekitchendivas
Mughlai Zaafrani Murgh from WhiskAffair
Tilwale Aloo from Saffron Trail
Sooji ka Halwa from FunFoodFrolic
Arbi ke Kebab from Archana’s Kitchen
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