"It has finally been proven that, amidst the veg biryani (which technically happens to be khichdi) and chicken biryani debate, mutton biryani is the clear and final winner."
- Source, my taste buds.
To begin with, the question itself is wrong.
Because there's no such thing as a 'veg' biryani. It can either be veg pulao or a khichdi.
Which means, the question should be "What's better? Chicken biryani or mutton biryani?"
And the answer is, mutton biryani. No offence, chicken. We love you. We really do.
But there's just something so succulent and aromatic about those tender pieces of meat cooked with rice, that it's just impossible not to love it.
Mutton is inherent to biryani. It's like they were always meant to be together.
Probably because even when biryani was invented, it was invented using mutton and not chicken.
Let's go back in time a little.
Legend has it that biryani was invented by Mumtaz Mahal. Upon finding out that her soldiers were looking weak and malnourished, she asked the chef to prepare a special concoction of meat and rice to provide them a balanced meal.
And as a result, biryani was invented.
Sorry, mutton biryani was invented.
There's another legend too that traces the origins of biryani to the Southern Malabar coast of India.
There's mention of a dish called Oon Soru as early as in 2 A.D. which was made from rice, ghee and mutton.
Notice how none of the biryani origin stories used chicken.
And for good reason.
Mutton in biryani tastes so heavenly, that you want to have it even when you're ill.
Somehow, mutton just goes beautifully with rice.
The pieces blend better, the masalas seep better and the end result is nothing less than heavenly.
So much so that I don't mind an occasional elaichi that makes a guest appearance in my mouth.
Gotta go now. All this talk of mutton biryani has made me mighty hungry.