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What Is Mutton Pulao?

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  • Written By: Eugene P.
  • Edited By: Angela B.
  • Last Modified Date: 18 July 2017
  • Copyright Protected:
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Mutton pulao is an Indian dish made from meat that is boiled or braised and then cooked with roasted spices and rice. The meat in the dish is generally cooked in water or stock, sometimes with ingredients such as yogurt or coconut milk, until a flavorful broth is formed. The rice in the dish is then cooked in the mutton broth until it has absorbed all of the spices and liquid, leaving a fairly dry mixture in the pan. The spices used in mutton pulao are usually dry roasted or fried with the meat, giving them a complex and intense flavor that is eventually softened by the addition of the rice. When completed, mutton pulao is often served with raita or slices of fried onion.

"Pulao" is a term for rice prepared pilaf style. The most common preparation is to soak the rice for a bit before adding it to flavored broth to finish cooking. The mixture of spices used in mutton pulao gives the rice a spicy flavor similar to Indian biryani rice, although cooking the spices in the mutton broth instead of directly in the rice with only water tends to mute the flavor, making it less spicy in the end.

The first step in making mutton pulao is to prepare the meat, although the rice is usually soaked separately in clean water at the same time. The mutton should be cleaned well and then placed in a pan along with onions and a paste made from ginger and garlic. The ingredients are fried in oil or ghee until the onions are soft and the meat has taken on some color.

Depending on the exact style of preparation, the spices for mutton pulao are added next in one of two ways. They can either be added progressively as the meat is cooking so they roast with the mutton and onions, or a masala can be prepared ahead of time by roasting the spices in a dry pan and then grinding them into powder. Water, stock or a combination of the two is then added to the pan so the meat is covered, and the entire mixture is allowed to simmer until the meat is fully cooked and the liquid has become a flavorful broth.

The mutton can be removed from the pan at this point but does not have to be. The soaked rice is placed in the broth and allowed to cook until it is soft and most of the liquid has been absorbed. At this point, the mutton pulao is done. It can be served on its own or with raita. Fried onions, cilantro or freshly cut vegetables can be used as garnish.

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