Hi, Ray here again.
We recently received a couple of emails that basically ask “What is the difference between a biryani curry and a pilau curry?” (There are lots of other ways to spell biryani, such as biriani and beriani. And there are also lots of ways to spell pilau, such as pilaf, pulao. There are other spelling variants but these seem to be the main ones).
Both curries are cooked with rice and both have the usual curry ingredients such as spices, onion, garlic and ginger. And both curry types can have vegetables or meat in them.
And both curries can taste really good.
So just what is different?
It’s all in the cooking. In a biryani curry, the rice is cooked separately to the other ingredients and then the ingredients and rice are brought together in layers for a final cooking phase. In a pilau curry, all of the ingredients and the rice are cooked together. Pilau rice is basically rice cooked with spices (sometimes other ingredients, such as mushrooms, are added and these extra ingredients are chopped up really small to give the impression that the only solid ingredient is the rice).
I tend to prefer a pilau curry but I did a quick poll of some friends and they were evenly split between biryani curry and pilau curry.
As said earlier, both curries can taste really good. And that’s what matters.