Sunday, February 22, 2009

Chicken Dhansak

This dish is a delicious combination of Indian and Iranian flavors. Dhansak is a type of curry that traditionally includes lentils. I love the flavor, slight spice of the dish, and the texture of the lentils.

Like many Indian dishes, it's fairly easy to throw together, but contains several ingredients or spices you may not have on hand. I would recommend just biting the bullet and buying all the spices you'll need for this recipe; once you've collected all of them, you'll be able to make almost any Indian dish.

Chicken Dhansak
from India's 500 Best Recipes
Picture by Caroline

1/3 cup green lentils*
2 cups chicken broth
1 tablespoon oil
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 curry leaves
1 onion, finely chopped
1 inch piece fresh root ginger, chopped
1 fresh green chili, chopped (optional)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1 14 oz can chopped tomatoes
4 chicken breasts
6 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon garam masala
  1. Rinse the lentils under cold running water. Put into a pan with the stock. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for about 15-20 minutes.
  2. Heat the oil in a large, heavy pan and fry the cumin seeds and curry leaves for 2 minutes. Add the onion, ginger, and chili and fry for about 5 minutes. Stir in the cumin, coriander, salt and chili powder with 2 tablespoons water.
  3. Add the tomatoes and the chicken pieces to the spices. Cover and cook for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Add the lentils and the stock, half the chopped cilantro and the garam masala. Cook for a further 10 mintues r until the chicken is tender. Garnish with the remaining fresh cilantro and serve over rice.
*Before cooking the lentils, be sure to pick them over and remove any small twigs that may have hidden themselves amongst the lentils.


Jessie said...

I ponied up for the spices and bought everything this recipe calls for, except garam masala, as I was unable to find it at the store. It was easy to prepare and tasted good. Now what to do with the rest of my 2lb bag of green lentils...

Valerie said...

This looks great and I love lentils. You have lots of great recipes here.

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