Sri Lankan Chicken Biriyani

chicken buriyani
Ruweena Deen's chicken biriyani with wattalapan, Malay pickle, and mint sambol.Jason Lang

Adapted from Ruweena Deen, mother-in-law of chef Nishad Jayawardena of Asylum restaurant, this is a special-occasion meal in Sri Lanka, made in large quantity and suitable for a weekend family gathering or to break fast for Eid at the end of Ramadan. The dish cooks relatively quickly, but the prep involved—caramelizing onions, grinding spices, and marinating the chicken and potatoes—is lengthy. Each step adds an essential layer of flavor to the final dish, so give yourself enough time to do them all.

What You Will Need