Dhansak Serving Suggestions
The Dhansak originates from the Parsi community and also has elements of Persian cuisine owing to the Persian immigrants who settled in Gujarat and Mumbai. It is the perfect one pot meal and, traditionally, it would have been served on a Sunday. A wonderful mix of lentils (dhan), vegetables (sak) and traditionally, meat. A Dhansak would always be served with accompaniments, often including browned rice and a nice fresh salad like Kachoombar.
Our Dhansak Curry Pack pays homage to this age-old, family recipe. It is much larger than our other dishes so you can make one big curry for the family and have loads of lovely leftovers. However, we recommend making up the sauce first and then splitting it into portions. This way you can enjoy a variety of curries from just one pack. Our pack will make enough sauce to be split into 4 portions, each of which will serve 2 people. When the sauce is split into four, each portion will take 250g of ingredients (although you could of course split it into two, with 500g ingredients each or just serve it as one big curry, with the full kilogram of ingredients).Try to leave the sauce overnight before dividing, so the flavour really develops. Using different ingredients and garnishes will create quite different results in the final curries, so if it is all served together as a Sunday feast you will have a tasty selection of dishes.
There are a few things to remember when cooking the Dhansak as it differs slightly from our other curries.
- It's a lentil based dish, so, when simmering the sauce, keep the lid on for the entire cooking time. The steam that builds in the pan helps the lentils to cook.
- Once cooked, lentils are like potatoes - they need a lot of seasoning, so be generous with it and also with your garnishes and condiments.
- Lemon juice will keep the spinach from going brown. The flavour goes very well with lentils.
- If you are cooking a meat Dhansak, try to serve it with something fresh (such as a Kachoombar).
- As with all curries, if using meat try to leave it on the bone. It will give you much more flavour and keep the meat moist.
- Add your garnishes to each plate right at the end, or even at the table. It will add another layer of flavour and look great.
Here are some of our favourite combinations of ingredients to help you create a variety of different dishes:
- Lamb - Add lamb to the sauce and cook until tender. Garnish with fresh chopped mint or mint sauce (Rafi’s favourite!) and a good squeeze of lemon juice. Serve with a tangy Kachoombar salad.
- Seafood - Stir fry prawns or poach firm white fish in the sauce, along with some fresh chopped tomatoes. Garnish with chopped coriander, sliced spring onion and a good squeeze of lime.
- Chicken - Throw some raw chicken thighs, or chicken portions on the bone, into the sauce and cook until done. Serve with lots of fresh coriander and mint and some lightly pickled onions. To pickle the onions, slice thinly and marinate for a couple of hours with a little vinegar and a pinch of salt.
- Vegetables - Try a selection of fresh spring vegetables like peas, beans, mangetout and peppers for a great light meal or even as a side dish to other curries.
There is no limit to the possibilities with the Dhansak Curry Pack, which is why we love it!