Friday 2 May 2014

Lamb and Potato Tahri/Akhni

Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu!

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

This recipe is for a Lamb and Potato Tahri. 

What is a tahri (also known as akhni)? It's when people have leftover meat or chicken curry, and they add rice and water to it (using a browned onion as a base), and then they simmer it until the water dries up and the rice is cooked.
We decided to make ours from scratch, and since we used a pressure cooker, were very surprised and happy to see how quickly this warming dish came together. 
I'd say, it's a cross between a Pulao and a Biryani, and it is delicious beyond question. A steaming plate of this on a rainy May evening will surely please anyone!
Rice, previously - Chicken PulaoZesty Rice SaladEgg Fried RiceQuick Pulao RiceKeema BiryaniChicken Sindhi Biryani and many others.

Ingredients needed include Basmati Rice, Vegetable Oil, Lamb Ribs, Potatoes, Tomato, Garlic, Onions, Salt, Red Chilli Powder, Ground Turmeric, Ground Coriander, Cumin Seeds, Fresh Coriander and Ginger.

Bismillah, let's begin!

Take a small frying pan, heat up a little Vegetable Oil and add in sliced Onion

Leave it to cook away on a low heat until the onions turn golden brown.

Now, to start the lamb curry. Take a pressure cooker or a large, deep pan, and place on a low heat. Add in some Onion.

Next, add in the Lamb Ribs. We used the ribs since they are best when cooking with rice, but any kind of lamb will do.

Take a Whole Garlic Bulb.

Peel it and in the whole cloves.

Along with a whole Tomato. Don't worry, this will break down when cooked.

Time to heat things up with the spices. You'll need Red Chilli Powder, Salt, Ground Turmeric, Ground Coriander and Cumin Seeds.

Add them all in.

Pour in some Water.

Give everything a good stir. If you're using:

A Pressure Cooker: Give pressure for 2-3 minutes, and once it begins to whistle, turn the heat down. Wait for 10-15 minutes before opening it, to allow it to cool. 

A Normal Saucepan: Bring everything to the boil, and then cover. Simmer on the lowest heat for 45 minutes.

While the lamb cooks, take some Potatoes.

Peel and cut them into chunks.

Peel and crush a little Fresh Ginger, as well.

Once the lamb is ready, uncover it and turn up the heat.

Stir fry it on the high heat to dry out the water.

Don't forget to give those frying onions a stir too.

Once the water has dried out ..

.. add in a few drizzles of Vegetable Oil.

Stir fry the lamb until ..

.. it begins to stick to the bottom of the pan, and becomes dark in colour.

Those frying onions should be done by now, so remove them from the heat.

Add the potatoes to the lamb.

Stir them in.

Add in Cumin Seeds.

Along with more Salt.

The fried onions and the crushed ginger.

And, chopped Fresh Coriander.

Stir well.

Pour in more Water.

Bring to the boil.

Next, the all important Basmati Rice. This should have been measured with the same cup that you measured the water. It should also have been washed and soaked at least 30 minutes before being cooked.

Add the drained rice to the pan.

Stir it in gently.

Allow the rice to soak up the water, a little.

Then, simmer on the lowest heat, covered, for 15 minutes until the rice and potatoes are fully cooked.

Serve straight away.

We always serve this with salad and Green Yoghurt Chutney.

Full Written Recipe:

Lamb and Potato Tahri

Adapted from Bajias Cooking 


2 cups Basmati Rice

½ kg Lamb Ribs

Vegetable Oil, as needed

2 Potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks

1 Large Tomato 

1 Whole Garlic Bulb, peeled

1 medium Onion, peeled and roughly chopped

1 small Onion, peeled and thinly sliced

Salt, as needed

1 teaspoon Red Chilli Powder

½ teaspoon Ground Turmeric

1 teaspoon Ground Coriander

Cumin Seeds, as needed

Handful of Fresh Coriander, chopped

1 inch piece Ginger, peeled and crushed


Heat a little oil in frying pan and onion. Cook on low heat until golden brown.

Wash and soak the rice at least 30 minutes before it is cooked.

In a pressure cooker, put the lamb, roughly chopped onion, whole tomato, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon cumin seeds, red chilli powder, ground turmeric, ground coriander whole garlic cloves and 1/2 cup water. 

Give pressure for 2-3 minutes, and once it begins to whistle, turn the heat down. Wait for 10-15 minutes to allow it to cool before opening.

If using a normal pot, bring everything to the boil and then simmer on low, covered for 45 minutes.

Once the lamb is uncovered, dry out the water on a high heat, keeping stirring, and add a few drizzles of oil.

When the lamb begins to stick to the bottom of the pan and becomes dark in colour, add the chopped potatoes.

Add the chopped coriander. Add crushed ginger and fried onions with the oil.

Add 3 cups (use the same cup with which you measured the rice) water, ½ teaspoon cumin seeds and ½ teaspoon salt. 

Stir well and bring to the boil, and then add the drained rice. 

Allow the rice to soak up the water a little, and then simmer on lowest heat for 15 minutes, covered.

Serve with green yoghurt chutney and salad.

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