Wash rice few times until the water runs clear. Soak for 30 mins. Drain the water.
Bring 8 to 10 cups of water to a boil in a large pot. Add bay leaf and shahi jeera. You can also add cinnamon stick, cardamoms and cloves. You can also tie these spices in a muslin cloth and add to the pot. It can be discarded later
When the water comes to a boil, add salt and drained rice.
Cook until it is done al dente. Rice should be firm, grainy and you must feel the bite into the grain when you bite it. Drain it off to a colander.
Making chicken dum biryani gravy
While the rice cooks, Saute onions in hot oil to make fried onions. When they are golden and evenly done, set aside 1/4 of them aside on a kitchen towel.
Lower the flame and saute bay leaf, star anise, shahi jeera, cloves, cardamom.
Add ginger garlic paste and fry until the raw smell has gone completely.
Add chicken and fry on a medium heat until it turns pale or white.
Sprinkle salt, biriyani masala, red chili powder, slit green chilies and turmeric. Mix well and fry for 3 mins.
Cover and cook on a low to medium flame for 3 to 4 mins to let the moisture out from the meat.
Pour yogurt and mix well. Cover and cook on a medium heat until the meat is completely cooked and the gravy thickens. At this stage a thick gravy is left for the dum process. Taste and adjust salt as needed.
Lower the flame, sprinkle some mint and coriander leaves. Stir well.
Layer the rice evenly. Sprinkle fried onions, mint, coriander leaves, saffron soaked milk, kewra water & ghee. You can also skip using saffron, ghee and kewra water but these give an authentic touch.
Cover the pot with a foil or a moist kitchen cloth. Place a tight lid to trap the steam or dum. If the lid is not tight then you can place a heavy pot on top of the lid.
To make multilayer chicken dum biryani:
Use a small pot . Just before layering the rice, set aside half of the chicken curry. Layer half the rice. Then layer the rest of the curry. Repeat layering rice then ghee, kewra , mint coriander and fried onions.
Dum process on stove top
Heat a old tawa or a pan, place this biryani pot and dum cook for 12 to 15 mins on a medium heat. If using a induction stovetop, you can directly place the pot at 3 No for 15 to 20 mins.
For oven method
Grease an oven safe bowl, Add the cooked chickn mixture, Layer the rice, sprinkle mint, coriander, saffron milk and seal it with a foil, dum in the preheated oven at 180 c for 15 to 25 minutes.