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Proper Parsi Dhansak

Proper Parsi Dhansak

  • 3simple
  • Pipe inversed
  • 10mins
A deliciously comforting and earthy curry made with both lentils and vegetables in the base, along with proper Parsi spices. Perfect with lamb, chicken, vegetables, prawns or paneer.

Contains a whole spice pouch, a base sauce and a stir-in sauce

  • Serves 2-3
  • No Nasties
  • Vegetarian
  • Mild
Hand my spice story

Dhansak is a much-loved Parsi dish. The Parsi people came to India from Persia and brought with them their own food and culture. Over the years their food was influenced by Indian ingredients and spices, mostly from Gujarat.

A proper dhansak is a complex balance of flavours of the more typical curry ingredients - onions, tomatoes, ginger and garlic. Where it goes off on a Parsi tangent is the addition of lentils and vegetables, which are cooked down into the sauce to create a fabulous and different curry experience. It is a unique and distinctive curry that much of India soon came to love. Most Parsis would add red meat into the curry, but many others add a mix of vegetables, chicken, paneer and even prawns into it. It is delicious in all its guises.

Home made meals stamp


Anjum’s Top Tips

Cut the meat, paneer and/or vegetables into generous pieces.

Heat 1 tsp of oil in a pan, add the spices and follow 10 seconds later with the meat, paneer and/or vegetables. Brown lightly for 2-3 minutes

Add the contents of the base sauce and simmer for 2 minutes

Stir in the main sauce and simmer for 3-5 minutes or until the meat is cooked through

If you don’t like whole spices, powder these in a pestle and mortar and add them in at the end , or remove them with a spoon before serving

OUR PERFECT Proper Parsi Dhansak

Clean and trim the excess fat off 200g diced leg of lamb (250g if not using squash). Heat 1 tbs. oil in a non-stick pan and add the lamb in 2 batches, and brown on all sides. Set aside. Add the spices from the spice sachet and fry for 15 seconds. Add in the lamb and sauces and bring to a simmer. Cook, covered for 50-60 minutes, or until the lamb is tender. Stir occasionally and make sure there is enough liquid in the pan so the lamb doesn’t catch and burn. If necessary, add a splash of boiling water to the pan. After 40 minutes, add in 100g cubes of butternut squash or pumpkin and continue to cook until both lamb and squash are soft.  Serve with rice.

This is a really versatile curry and works with chicken, prawns and a selection of vegetables. 

It is a very light curry, so if you are going vegetarian you might want to cook the spices in a heaped tsp of ghee.


Water, Pumpkin, Lentils, Onion, Aubergine, Ginger, Sunflower Oil, Spices, Tomato Paste, Sugar, Garlic, Salt, Coriander Powder, Tamarind, Rice Flour, Turmeric, Black MUSTARD SEEDS



PER 100g
ENERGY 311kJ/74kcal
FAT 2.7g
of which saturates 0.3g
of which sugars 2.5g
FIBRE 1.6g
SALT 1.0g

The spice mix

  • Dry fenugreek leaves
    Dry fenugreek leaves for savory aroma
  • Whole red chilli
    Whole red chilli for clean heat
  • Star anise
    Star anise for sweet anise warmth
Testimonial Image
Quotes heading
Just wanted to say that I made a vegetarian curry today using your Proper Parsi Dhansak sauce - and it was fantastic! I was fed up with jars that tasted nothing like restaurant-standard meals. I came across your packs yesterday, made it today, and was so pleased I had to contact you
- Patsy from the UK

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