Chicken Dhansak Parsi

Chicken Dhansak Parsi

The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 90 mins
Total: 100 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
563 Calories
22g Fat
52g Carbs
50g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 563
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 22g 28%
Saturated Fat 5g 27%
Cholesterol 105mg 35%
Sodium 528mg 23%
Total Carbohydrate 52g 19%
Dietary Fiber 12g 42%
Protein 50g
Calcium 611mg 47%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This delicious and popular Parsi dish can be made with chicken or lamb. You can even omit the meat altogether and go vegetarian. Dhansak is traditionally served with brown rice and Kachumbar salad.

While it seems like a lot of ingredients at first glance, most of them are for the Dhansak masala powder. To make and store some for later, just double or triple the quantities from the recipe below, prepare, and store in an airtight container or freeze in a freezer container.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup mixed lentils (toor, masoor, urad and moong (1/4 cup each))
  • 1 liter chicken stock
  • 500 grams of chicken pieces (of your choice, boneless)
  • 10 black peppercorns
  • 8 cloves
  • 1-inch piece cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 1-inch piece of mace
  • 2 large bay leaves
  • 1 star anise
  • 3 dry red chilies
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 large bunch each of fresh coriander leaves and fenugreek leaves (approximately 150 grams/ 0.33 pounds each)
  • 1/2 bunch mint leaves (approximately 75 grams)
  • 1 tablespoon tamarind paste
  • 1 tablespoon garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable, canola, or sunflower cooking oil
  • Salt (to taste)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Chicken Dhansak Parsi ingredients

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  2. Wash the lentils well.

    Wash the lentils

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  3. Put them in a deep pan, add the chicken stock, salt to taste, and add a cup of water.

    Put the lentils in a deep pan, add the chicken stock, salt to taste, and add a cup of water

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  4. Boil until the lentils are soft. Add more water if required.

    lentils cooking in a pot

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  5. While the lentils are boiling, heat a griddle or heavy-bottomed flat pan on a medium flame and dry roast all the spices (except the turmeric and nutmeg) until they begin to release their aroma.

    heat a pan on a medium flame and dry roast all the spices

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  6. Remove from the fire, cool, and then grind to a fine powder in a dry coffee or spice grinder.

    grind the spices in a spice grinder

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  7. Mix in the turmeric and nutmeg and blend well. Set aside.

    Mix in the turmeric and nutmeg into the spice mixture

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  8. When the lentils are cooked soft, whisk them to get a smooth and thick soup-like consistency. Set aside.

    whisk the lentils in the pot

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  9. Heat the cooking oil in a pan on a medium flame and when hot, add the fresh coriander, fenugreek, and mint leaves. Fry till soft. Remove from the fire and cool.

    add the fresh coriander, fenugreek, and mint leaves to a pan

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  10. Grind into a smooth paste in a food processor.

    coriander, fenugreek, and mint mixture in a food processor

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  11. Heat a deep, heavy-bottomed pan on a medium flame and add the lentils, ginger, garlic, and tamarind pastes and bring to a boil, stirring frequently to prevent sticking. The consistency should always be like a medium-thick soup.

    dd the lentils, ginger, garlic, and tamarind pastes to the lentil mixture

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  12. Add a cup of water, the spice powder, coriander-fenugreek-mint paste you made earlier, salt if required, and the chicken pieces. Mix well.

    Add a cup of water, the spice powder, coriander-fenugreek-mint paste and chicken to the lentil mixture

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  13. Simmer and cook till chicken is done. Add more water to maintain consistency as needed. Serve hot.

    Chicken Dhansak Parsi in a pot

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

Serving Ideas

Serve the dhansak with Parsi brown rice and a Kachumbar salad.