Shemin’s Fish Biryani

We have been wanting to send this recipe out for a while now. Before lock down we made it for a dinner party and it was a complete hit!

A great new recipe to try out for yourself and the family.


  • 2 tbsp cooking oil or ghee
  • 1 medium raw onion, finely sliced
  • 60g Shemin’s Seafood, Indian or Massaman Curry Paste
  • 2 tbsp Shemin’s Biryani / Pilau Spice Blend plus ½ tsp for the rice
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes or 4 medium fresh tomatoes chopped
  • 160ml coconut cream
  • 250g frozen spinach thawed or fresh baby leaf spinach
  • 300g basmati rice washed until the water runs clear and soaked for half an hour
  • 3 Shemin’s Cardamom Pods crushed
  • 1 stick of Shemin’s Cassia Cinnamon Bark
  • Salt
  • 1tsp saffron soaked in 60ml warm milk (optional)
  • 1 small bunch of coriander and ½ small bunch mint leaves chopped
  • 700g firm fish like cod, hake, salmon… cut into 5cm chunks or fish cutlets
  • 300g potatoes, cut into bite sized pieces and deep fried or boiled until cooked
  • 2 large onions fried until golden brown and crispy
  • 3 medium potatoes cut into quarters boiled or fried (optional)



  1. Heat the oil or ghee in a 3 litre casserole dish over a medium heat. Add the raw onions and cook until caramelised
  2. Add the curry paste with a splash of water and 2 tbsp of Shemin’s Biryani / Pilau Spice Blend. Cook gently for a minute until fragrant
  3. Stir in the tomatoes and coconut milk then bring to the boil. Cook gently until the tomatoes have broken down – about 5 mins wuth the saucepan lid on.
  4. Add the spinach and cook until warmed through. If the sauce is dry, add some water. Remove from heat and cool. Check seasoning
  5. Pre heat oven to 180°C, 350°F, gas mark 4
  6. In a large saucepan add 1½ litres of water, ½ tsp of Shemin’s  Biryani / Pilau Spice Blend, Shemin’s Cinnamon and Cardamom Pods, and enough salt so that the water tastes a little salty, then bring to the boil. Add the rice and cook for 5-8 minutes until the rice is al dente. Drain, reserving the liquid
  7. Place the fish and potatoes in the sauce, and fold in gently. Sprinkle 1/3 of the saffron milk and some of the coriander and mint leaves over the fish. If using the fried onions, put a little over the the fish
  8. Top with rice, spread out evenly with the back of a spoon. Sprinkle with the rest of the saffron mixture, fried onions, chopped coriander and mint leaves
  9. Add 3 tbsp of the reserved liquid from the drained rice to ensure the rice steams and stays moist. Scatter some knobs of butter or ghee over the rice
  10. Cover with foil and a tight fitting lid then bake for 40 minutes until the rice is cooked.  Scatter some fried onions over the top or lightly toasted desiccated coconut if you prefer and sprinkle with coriander leavesTip: Crispy fried onions can be found in the Asian section of your supermarket

Perfect with Shemin’s Indian Breads

Serves 6

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