Wash rice in several changes of water, add water to cover and 1 tablespoon salt, mix and cover; set aside three hours.
Place saffron threads in a heated pan and toss until they turn a darker color. In a small cup add the crumbled threads and with warm milk; set aside three hours.
Cut two onions in half and then into thin half round slices.
Chop third onion coarsely and add to a blender along with the garlic, ginger, 1 tablespoons lime juice and 1 tablespoons of water, blend into a paste; set aside.
Grind finely in a blender the cloves, peppercorns, cardamom seeds, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, Garam Masala, nutmeg and cayenne pepper; set aside.
Made some soft dough with flour and water, then wrap in plastic/cover (for sealing the pot); set aside.
Heat 3 tablespoons of oil (or ghee) in a frying pan, add the onion halves and fry until brown and crispy, remove to a plate lined with paper towels.
Put raisins in the same frying pan (with the oil) and fry until plump (which happens quickly) and remove on a paper lined plate.
Place 2 tablespoons of oil in the frying pan and fry the almonds until brown, remove and place them with the raisins in the plate; set aside.
Place the lamb into the same frying pan (a few at a time) and cook until brown on all sides, do this for all the pieces; remove and set aside in a large bowl.
Add 6 tablespoons of oil to a frying pan, when hot add the third onion and blended paste, fry to brown (add a little water if needed to prevent sticking to pan).
Add all the meat to the frying pan (and liquid juices), add yogurt (one tablespoon at a time) & incorporate well, add 1 teaspoon salt, 2 bay leaf, cinnamon stick and 2/3 cup warm water. Mix and bring to a simmer, cover and cook for 30 minutes (stir as needed).
After the meat has simmered for 30 minutes, add the grind-ed spices. Cover and continue to simmer another 30 minutes… until you have about 3/4 cup of a thick sauce (add a little water and stir as needed).
Use 1 tablespoon oil on a paper towel and grease the bottom of a big heat proof pot (Corningware), add the meat and sauce, cover and keep warm.
Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a pot, add 1 tablespoon salt. Drain the rice and rinse it off under running water and then add to pot. Bring back to a boil and boil rapidly for exactly 6 minutes. Then drain the rice.
Next put the rice on top of the meat and form a mount and hole in the center (volcano shaped). Drizzle the saffron milk in streaks along the sides and inside of the hill. Place the pieces of butter on the sides of the hill and scatter the fried onions, almonds, raisins and mint leaves over it as well.
Cover the heat proof pot with aluminum foil, sealing in the edges well with the dough all around. Next simmer on a stove top for 30 minutes (do not open up the cover or the meat will burn).
Remove the cover and place the egg halves all around the inside of the pot.
Serve and enjoy!
Go to the URL YouTube and search Biryani in order to have an idea on making this interesting recipe.
It is important to seal the pot with aluminum foil and some soft dough in order to keep any steam from escaping. Do not open the cover to check the cooking because it will cause the meat to burn on the bottom of the pot.