Search Recipes

Dhansak

THIS SUMPTUOUS CURRY COMES FROM THE PARSEES OF WEST INDIA, WHO EMIGRATED THERE FROM IRAN IN THE SEVENTH CENTURY. IT IS STRIKING FOR THE NUMBER OF DIFFERENT LENTILS USED, AS WELL AS VEGETABLES SUCH AS ENGLISH SPINACH, PUMPKIN AND EGGPLANT (AUBERGINE), VARIOUS SPICES AND TENDER LAMB.

Ingredients

Dhansak
Dhansak
100 g (3 ½ oz/¾ cup) yellow lentils
2 teaspoons dried yellow mung beans
2 tablespoons dried chickpeas
3 tablespoons red lentils
1, unpeeled eggplant (aubergine)
150 g (5 ½ oz), unpeeled pumpkin (winter squash)
2 tablespoons ghee or oil
1, finely chopped onion
3 cloves, crushed garlic
1 tablespoon grated ginger
1 kg (2 lb 4 oz), cut into 3 cm (1 ¼ in) cubes boneless leg or shoulder of lamb
1 cinnamon stick
5, bruised cardamom pods
3 cloves
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon, or to taste chilli powder amaranth or English
150 g (5 ½ oz), cut into 5 cm (2 in) lengths spinach leaves
2, halved tomatoes
2, split lengthways, seeded long green chillies
3 tablespoons lime juice

Method

  1. Soak the yellow lentils, yellow mung beans and chickpeas in water for about 2 hours, then drain well.
  2. Put all four types of pulse in a saucepan, add 1 litre (35 fl oz/4 cups) water, cover and bring to the boil. Uncover and simmer for 15 minutes, skimming off any scum that forms on the surface, and stirring occasionally to make sure all the pulses are cooking at the same rate and are soft. Drain the pulses and lightly mash to a similar texture.
  3. Cook the eggplant and pumpkin in boiling water for 10– 15 minutes, or until soft. Scoop out the pumpkin flesh and cut it into pieces. Peel the eggplant carefully (it may be very pulpy) and cut the flesh into small pieces.
  4. Heat the ghee or oil in a casserole dish or karahi and fry the onion, garlic and ginger for 5 minutes, or until lightly brown and softened. Add the lamb and brown for 10 minutes, or until aromatic. Add the cinnamon, cardamom pods, cloves, coriander, turmeric and chilli powder and fry for 5 minutes to allow the flavours to develop. Add 170 ml (5 ½ fl oz/⅔ cup) water, cover and simmer for 40 minutes, or until the lamb is tender.
  5. Add the mashed lentils and all the cooked and raw vegetables to the pan. Add the lime juice and simmer for 15 minutes (if the sauce is too thick, add a little water). Stir well, then check the seasoning. The dhansak should be flavoursome, aromatic, tart and spicy.

Note: A karahi is a deep, wok-shaped cooking dish used in Indian and Balti cooking. It lends itself perfectly to one-pot meals and can be taken straight from the stove to the table for serving.

 

Main ingredient:
Lentils, Lamb, Pumpkin
Cuisine:
Indian
Course:
Dinner, Lunch

More recipes like this...

Lentil dhal with mint, haloumi and okra.

Red lentil dhal with curry leaves, mint and haloumi

Karen Martini
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
3 Reader ratings
Lentil dhal

Lentil dhal

Stephanie Alexander
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
102 Reader ratings
Lentil and sweet potato curry.

Lentil and sweet potato curry

Jeremy and Jane Strode
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
101 Reader ratings
Garam Masala sprinkled on red lentil dhal. MASALA recipes for Epicure and Good Living, by Jane and Jeremy Strode. Photographed by Marina Oliphant. Styling by Mags King. Merchandising by Berni Smithies. The Age Newspaper and The Sydney Morning Herald. Photographed February 20, 2012.

Garam masala and red lentil dhal

Jane Strode
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
38 Reader ratings
Lentils

Lentils with tamarind sauce

Neil Perry
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
133 Reader ratings
spinach chana dhal

Spinach chana dhal

Jill Dupleix
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
51 Reader ratings
Murdoch Recipe Thumbnail

Lentil bhuja casserole

Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
28 Reader ratings

Comments

Be the first to comment.

Make a comment

You are logged in as [Logout]

All information entered below may be published.

Error: Please enter your screen name.

Error: Your Screen Name must be less than 255 characters.

Error: Your Location must be less than 255 characters.

Error: Please enter your comment.

Error: Your Message must be less than 300 words.

Post to

You need to have read and accepted the Conditions of Use.

Thank you

Your comment has been submitted for approval.

Comments are moderated and are generally published if they are on-topic and not abusive.

Recipes - Forum

What we’re cooking

Latest on EK

Pester power: Call for ban on free toys used to sell unhealthy food

Obesity experts say freebies should be restricted to attracting children to healthier options.

Mums' workload equals 2.5 full-time jobs

A study has found working mums toil for an average of 98 hours a week.

How many of our bosses would have aced NAPLAN tests?

In more than 25 years' of journalism, I've never interviewed a leader who topped his or her class at school.

Children's shoes found to contain cancer-causing chemical

The ACCC had issued an urgent recall.

When it comes to sport, boys 'play like a girl'

Girls in primary school are just as physically capable as their male classmates, according to research.

Find After School Care

Search by Postcode

Find a Babysitter

  • Daytime nannies
  • Casual babysitters
  • After-school care
  • Live-in nannies