Yishun’s Chicken Biryani made by a Bangladeshi Chef

Briyani has stolen the hearts of many, even those outside of India!

The three main components of this popular dish are a wonderful blend of Basmati rice herbed with various spices, followed by an overwhelmingly generous dollop of curry topped off with meat or vegetable of choice. Truly a gastronomical trio to be reckoned with!

Quietly tucked away at 343 Yishun Avenue 11 is Briyani 47, a humble hawker stall doling out mouthwatering plates of long-grain goodness. All culinary matters are handled by Sharif, a young, bright-eyed Bangladeshi national who is interestingly, also the co-owner of the business. 

Sharif’s thoughtfulness is reflected in his food. Firstly, it is Halal, so all your friends of different religions and races can enjoy this together without having to worry about dietary restrictions. Secondly, he has specially reduced the level of heat in the curry so that it is suitable for children as well. If these weren’t sufficient enough measures, the taste of his Briyani is also slightly altered from its original Desi counterparts to better suit the palates of the Singaporean crowd. 

How is this achieved? After nights of brainstorming, Sharif and his boss decided that by grinding up the spices finely into a paste, this would result in a smoother, more subtle flavour that would appeal to non-Indians more. 

You can choose from Mutton, Chicken, Fish and Tofu. I wanted to try the Pappadums as well but unfortunately they were sold out by 3.15pm– a time I specifically chose to head down with my friends in order to avoid the bustling lunch crowd. True enough, there were many empty spaces in the small Kopitiam. However, once I placed the order for one of each variety, Sharif immediately slipped a ‘Sold Out’ placard in front of the cash register. Suffice to say, this was enough evidence to support the roaring demand prior to my arrival! 

As I waited for my late lunch, I spied at least two customers strolling up to the stall only to be turned away because I arrived just minutes earlier.

It seemed like Briyani 47 was an undisputed heartland favourite. 

We wasted no time in tucking in. Due to COVID-19, our meals were served in disposable styrofoam packages. The rice was plentiful and we savoured every mouthful, however we couldn’t say the same for the portions of mutton and chicken offered. I wondered if this was because I bought the last helpings of the day before Sharif decided to close shop. Despite this, the chicken was delicious and tender which made for a satisfying complement to the dish! 

On the other hand, there was so much fish. Yet the copious amounts of it did not compromise on its quality. Personally, this was my favourite. The flesh was juicy, soft and silky which easily fell apart the moment I sank my teeth into it. Very quickly, this was gobbled up with much gusto.

The tofu was described as meaty and springy with a bite to it, with a texture reminiscent to that of fermented tofu. Coming across Tofu Briyani was quite a pleasant surprise as this wasn’t a common pairing, although a delectable one nonetheless. Beancurd fans would give this a two thumbs up for sure.

This was very heavy and I could hardly stomach any more food for the rest of the day. I recommend that unless you’re a big eater, come and indulge at Briyani 47 for breakfast, brunch or lunch! If dinner plans are on the cards, make sure you arrive prepared on an empty gut because you’ll leave all filled up. 

Briyani 47

Address: Blk 343 Yishun Ave 11
Opens 10.30am-8.30pm (Closed on Tues)

Written by: Claire Soh