With hundreds of thousands of Indian-born students moving to the United States to study almost every year, it is possible that some of them have had to visit different psychologists during their stay. After all, making this decision entails leaving their friends for some time in hopes of having a better future. If they do not have relatives in the US, they are practically alone in a foreign country. To keep their loved ones from worrying back home, though, these students tend to put a happy front when talking to their parents, even though they may have a hard time adapting to the culture, food, and people. What they do instead is consult a psychologist who can hopefully help them cope with their new reality.
Nevertheless, based on personal experience as an exchange student, what is more, comforting than talking to a mental health expert is cooking the dishes that my mother used to make for me in the past. My creations may never be as good as Mom’s, but the idea of eating something that I grew up seeing is enough for me. It has allowed me not to miss my family too much and finish my studies.
Now, one of the dishes that I used to make is Dindigul biriyani.
The Richness Of Dindigul Biriyani
Biryani (also known as biriyani or biryani) is a general term used to pertain to the savory rice dish from the Indian subcontinent. And similar to how there are different kinds of chocolates, shoes, and clothes, there are also different kinds of biriyanis from various parts of India.
One exceptional variation of this is the Dindigul Biriyani, which has originated more than 50 years back from Dindigul, a town within the city of Chennai in the state of Tamil Nadu. It is a non-vegetarian main course that is unlike the biryanis from Hyderabad, Calcutta, Kerala, Bombay, and Gujarat, to name a few. It does not look as elaborate as the others, to be honest. However, if there is anything that life has taught us, it is that the beauty of someone – or something, in this case – comes from deep within.
Below are some of the ingredients that make Dindigul Biryani a showstopper in its own right.
Jeera Samba Rice
Jeera Samba is a rice variety which is commonly grown and harvested in the Southern part of India, especially in Tamil Nadu. It has shorter grain than the fragrant Basmati rice and is preferable to use for this kind of biryani. The reason is that the latter already has a distinct taste and smell due to its less starchiness. The former, meanwhile, does not taste like anything. Hence, Jeera Samba is more capable of captivating the aroma of the flavors in every grain.
Smaller Cuts Of Meat
Although several biryanis have chunks of meat (with or without bone) integrated to them, the Dindigul Biriyani contains smaller pieces of meat to give it a divergent taste. Whether you use mutton, chicken, or beef, the larger cuts will generally be more difficult to soften and get infused with different flavors. On the other hand, the spices will quickly become ingrained within the tiny cubes of meat that can melt in your as you eat. Since the meat is deboned initially for this dish, and there is not a single part of it thrown away, the plate of rice will be as good as new after you finish the food.
Whereas various biryani dishes rely heavily on curry, masala, and cardamom to spice them up, the recipe from Dindigul is not timid about using a generous amount of pepper. It can downright invigorate your body and give you extra energy to get through the day. Pepper is also an ingredient that turns the dish into a diverse food experience for biryani lovers.
Curd And Lemon
Aside from the flaming hot taste of this rice dish, it is also famous for its tanginess. The strong acidic flavor comes from curd and lemon, which are staple constituents when creating the Dindigul Briyani. Lemon is a common citrus fruit, while the curd is far from being yogurt – another ingredient for other biriyanis. After all, the former only has one good bacteria, while the latter has two.
You may try to say that the biriyani in India is much different from what you can make in the US, and that may be true. The spices are somehow fresher in your home country. You get to add other ingredients and share it with your loved ones, too. Nevertheless, your desire to have a better shot at a better life may be stronger than your dream of coming home right now. Just don’t forget the taste of Dindigul biryani so that you can feel like you’re back in your beloved country even for a short while.