Mandi is a staple food extremely famous in the middle east, originated from Yemen located southwest of the Arabian peninsula. Nowadays mandi is commonly available in most restaurants. But there is no way you could have savored the authentic mandi. Mandi-making is a hefty process. Let’s have a look at how the authentic mandi is made.
Making of Mandi
Preparation time: 2 hours approximately
The following procedure is for authentic middle-eastern mandi
Mandi can be cooked with any one of the following meats:
• Lamb (A whole medium-sized lamb of 10 – 15kg)
• Chicken (20 whole chickens)
• Camel (10 – 15 kg of camel or a whole leg would be enough)
• Goat (A whole medium-sized goat of 10 – 15kg)
• A pit of minimum height 4 ½ft
• A barrel that can fit right into the pit (optional)
• A cap with the same diameter as the pit
• A grill to hold the meat
• Iron hooks to lift the vessel
|Notes: Adding too many ingredients could spoil the taste.|
Ingredients Required for 5kg mandi
For Rice Preparation:
• 5 kilograms of basmati rice
• ½ liters of cooking oil
• 2 kilograms of sliced tomato
• 1 ½ kilograms of finely sliced onion
• Whole green chili 10 – 12 pieces
• 25 grams of cardamom
• 200 grams of whole cinnamon
• 5 tspn salt
• 5 pieces of capsicum
• 10 whole dry lemons
• A fistful of shah jeera
• 50 grams of cloves
For Coating the Meat:
• Turmeric Powder
• Chilli powder
• Ginger garlic paste
• Mixed spices (Garam masala)
• Saffron or Tiger essence for coloring
The mandi process starts with digging a pit of 4½ ft or above. After digging, we can either use a barrel or build the pit with bricks and cement. I’d strongly recommend the barrel as it consumes less time compared to building a pit. Once we’re done with the pit. We need to prepare the rice for mandi.
For this, we need a vessel that can hold 5kgs of boiled rice. The preparation starts with pouring half-liters of cooking oil into the boiling vessel. Add 1½ kgs onions to the boiling oil. Sauté it properly until you notice a slight color change. Then add 10-12 pieces of whole green chili. Leave some 20 seconds and add 25 grams of cardamom, 200 grams of whole cinnamon, and ½ kg of ginger garlic paste at the same time. Roast the spices for 30 seconds then add 10 cups of water. Add the required amount of crystal salts to the boiling water. Add the taken capsicum and thinly sliced tomatoes to this (In India, tomatoes are added at the beginning itself as in biryani. But here we need to add the tomatoes at the final stage to get the real taste of mandi). Let the ingredients boil for some time until you notice the oil separates from the mixture. After boiling the ingredients, add the dried whole black lemons along with shah jeera then we can proceed to add the rice. Soak the rice for 5 – 10 minutes before using it. Once the rice is cooked well put the cloves on it.
Now that the rice preparation is over. We need to prepare the meat taken. In this, we’re taking mutton.
Skin the mutton and cleanse the meat with hot water, turmeric and salt. This can cleanse and disinfect the meat very well. Now the meat is marinated with a blend of spices made of turmeric powder, chili powder, mixed masalas, salt, ginger-garlic paste, and saffron. Make sure to marinate the meat whilst you prepare the pit. So that the meat will absorb all the spices completely.
Now fill 1/5th of the pit with charcoals. Now the prepared rice is lowered into that pit with the help of iron hooks. Don’t let the vessel touch the bottom. It needs to hang slightly above the burning charcoals. Place the meat on the grill properly (if the taken meat is mutton or lamb you can cut it into 4 pieces). Now the grill is placed upon the rice and the pit is closed with the barrel seal. Using a cloth over the pit before closing can increase the efficiency of charcoals by not letting the vapor out.
Open the pit after 1hr (for chicken) 1 ½ hrs (for mutton). The fat of the well-cooked meat along with the blended spices would have dripped into the rice by the time we open the pit. Run the spoon from corners without breaking the rice to mix the dripped meats with the rice. Thus, the authentic middle eastern mandi is prepared. This 5kg mandi can serve up to 35 people and served along with Shatta. To experience the Saudi Arabian style. Serve the mandi and the whole meat in a sahan (big plate) and savor the delicious mandi along with family and friends.
You can also enhance the appearance and aroma with our essence.Click here to find the correct essence for you.
Ingredients for Shatta (Tomato Sauce)
• 4 Tomatoes
• 4 Green Chillies
• 4 Garlic Cloves
• ¼ Teaspoon Jeera Powder
Shatta preparation is just as simple as boiling water. All we need to do is smoothly blend all the ingredients till it appears saucy. That’s all our shatta is ready.