A popular South Asian dish, inspired by Persian and Indian cuisine. A classic assortment of chicken, veggies and lentils forms a nutritious, filling and delectable meal, all by itself! Typically served with Laila Brown rice and kachumbar salad.This high-protein dhansak curry might involve elaborate preparation but the labour is worth it in the end! You may choose to prepare a large batch for the entire week and can replace chicken with meat, tofu, etc.
To Make the Saffron Rice:
- Rinse the rice well, drain.
- Boil water in a pan, add the soaked rice and cook for 20 minutes.
- Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat. Add the saffron.
- Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes or until stock is absorbed and rice is tender.
- Fluff with a fork and serve.
To Make the Chicken Dhansak:
- Mash the ginger and garlic together into a pulp.
- In a grinder, mix together the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, cardamoms, cinnamon stick, dried chillies, peppercorns, bay leaves, fenugreek seeds, and the mustard seeds. Add in 6 tbsp water to make a smooth paste. Blend in garlic and ginger pulp, mix well and add to the chicken making sure it is well coated.
- Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a large pan and sauté the chicken for about 10 minutes.
- Add ½ litre of water and bring to the boil. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Turn off the heat and keep aside.
- In a separate bowl, combine Laila Yellow Split Peas and Laila Red Split Lentils together and wash them until the water runs clear. Drain.
- Heat 3 tbsp of oil in another pan and fry the onions until they begin to turn golden.
- Add the turmeric and garam masala, cook for 1 minute then add the lentils and cook over a low heat for 5 minutes.
- Add water and salt and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and cook for 30 minutes.
- Mash the lentilsto make a smooth mixture and add this to the Chicken pan.
- Bring it to the boil, reduce the heat and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- In a separate bowl, dissolve the tamarind in a little hot water and add it to this pan. Cook for 3 minutes.
- Garnish with coriander and serve piping hot with saffron rice.
For the Rice:
- 1 cup Laila Basmati Rice
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 tbsp butter (optional)
- 1 tbsp dried onion flakes
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 pinch saffron (crumbled)
For the Dhansak:
- 450g boneless chicken thighs (chunks)
- 85g Laila Yellow Split Peas
- 85g Laila Red Split Lentils (rinsed in cold water)
- 600ml chicken stock
- 230g chopped tomatoes
- 1 onion (finely sliced)
- 6 garlic cloves (crushed)
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger (finely chopped)
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp coriander seeds
- 1tsp fennel seeds
- ½ tsp mustard seeds
- 4 green cardamoms
- 2-inch cinnamon sticks (pcs)
- 6 dried chillies
- 10 peppercorns
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tsp garam masala
- ½ tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp tamarind paste
- Coriander leaves (chopped)