Surbiyaan - Somali style biryani

Surbuyaan is the Somali version of biryani. An aromatic dish typically served at special occasions like weddings.


  • 1 Tbsp Oil (ghee, olive oil or available vegetable cooking oil)
  • 14 oz (400 gr) lamb, cubed (or meat of choice)
  • 1 large Onion, diced
  • 3 Garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 3 Tomatoes, diced
  • 11 oz (300 gr) Potatoes, peeled and cut into bite size
  • 11 oz (300 gr) Rice, basmati ot jasmine 
  • 2 Tbsp USimplySeason Xawaash
  • 1 tsp Salt + 1/2 tsp Salt

How to cook...

  1. Sautee the onion in 1 Tbsp oil for approximately 3-5 minutes until soft and translucent.
  2. Add the lamb, garlic, tomatoes, Xawaash, and salt to the sauteed onions and cover the pot to cook for 30 minutes or until the lamb is cooked (but not tender) and the tomatoes have broken down.
  3. Add the diced potatoes into the lamb mixture and cook for another 15 minutes or until the liquid has been absorbed and the potatoes are just cooked through. Stir occasionally and add a splash of water if necessary to keep the mixture from burning.
  4. Add the rice (ensure you've washed and rinsed the rice several times), 1/2 tsp salt, and 500 ml water into the lamb and potato mixture. Make sure all the grains of rice are sitting below the water. Cover and cook for approximately 20 minutes until the rice is cooked. 
  5. Remove the pan from heat but keep the lid on and allow to sit for 5 minutes before serving.
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