This Dhansak is vegetarian and has no meat. It is modified to be suitable for western taste. The Spicy Dhansak recipes and photos are in my Cookbook available on Amazon
Vegetarian Dhansak Dal (Lentil) Recipe
1 cup Yellow Split Peas washed and soaked for 30 minutes in water
1 tsp. Salt.
1 tsp. Turmeric.
3 cups Water.
1 tsp. Butter for glaze.
1 small onion finely chopped.
2 tbsp. oil.
2 tsp. Ginger/Garlic/Chili Paste. (2 cloves garlic + 1 hot green pepper + half inch of ginger).
1 tsp. or less of black pepper.
1 tsp. each of Coriander and Cumin powder.
1 tsp. Dhansak Masala. (optional)
Rinse the dal and put all of the above ingredients in a Pressure cooker or Instant Pot. Water should be enough to cover the dal by 2 inches. Cook for 20 minutes.
Mash the dal with electric blender or by hand. Transfer to a large pot and bring to a simmer. Add 1 tsp. Butter for glaze if desired.
Next do the tempering. Sauté the onion in hot oil till brown. Lower heat and add the paste. Sauté till aroma comes out. Add all the dry spices and sauté.
Immediately add this tempering to the simmering dhansak dal.
Add water if needed.
Taste and add salt/spices to your taste.
Yellow Split Peas are called Indian Tuvar or Toor lentils.
Dhansak Brown Rice Recipe
1 cup Basmati rice washed and soaked for half hour
2 cups water
1 tbsp. oil
1 small onion. (or caramel sugar instead the onion )
1/2 inch stick of cinnamon
2 Cardamom pods or 1/2 tsp. of cardamom powder
1/2 tsp. Salt (to taste)
Chop the onion into very fine slices. Heat oil and brown onion till dark brown, keep water handy and add immediately before the onion becomes black. This is the way to give the flavor and color to the rice. ( Or add caramel sugar for the same brown color).
Add rice and the rest of ingredients.
Bring to a boil uncovered, now put on lowest heat and cook 20 minutes till rice is done.
Kachumbar Salad Recipe
1 large onion
1 Cucumber (optional)
Coriander Leaves (optional)
Mint Leaves (optional)
Green Chilies (optional)
Salt or Vinegar to taste.
Chop onion into very fine slices. Crumble with hands and mix in salt or vinegar.
Add chopped tomato, cucumber, chilies, coriander and mint.
PHOTO: Naurooz / Nawruz table is from a local library exhibit in Lexington MA.
by Soli Dastur
Long long time ago, King Jamsheed of the Iranian Peshdaadiyan Dynasty founded the festival of Naurooz (meaning “new day” in Persian) to celebrate the coming of spring after the cold, dark winter. If you recall that in those times Iran was a pastoral community, and this festival marks the triumph of good over evil with light literally defeating darkness as Naurooz falls on the Vernal Equinox, when night equals day, and subsequently the hours of daylight increase.
History and Practice of Naurooz
Today, Naurooz is celebrated the world over by people influenced by pre-Islamic Iranian culture. What makes Naurooz unique is that it is the only holiday celebrated by several religious communities in various countries.
Among the best-known customs of Naurooz is the Sofreh (spread) Haft-sheen/seen, with seven gifts of Nature with names beginning with the Farsi letter “sheen” or “seen”. A week or so before the holiday, grains of wheat and lentils are placed in bowls to sprout into a mass of greenery, symbolizing growth. The table is also laden with fruit, nuts, sweets and snacks, candles, and the holy book, the Khordeh Avesta for Zoroastrians. A bowl with goldfish and a basket of colored eggs, indicating new life, are also placed on the table. Custom dictates that visitors who come to share the holiday with you should be sprinkled with fragrant rosewater and asked to look into a mirror to make a wish. Some say that this ritual symbolizes that you smell as sweet as roses and shine as bright as a mirror throughout the new year.
The Haft-Sheen table symbolizes the holiday spirit in much the same way the Christmas tree promotes a special festive mood and the table is kept replenished for thirteen days.
To the Zoroastrians, the sixth day is called the “Naurooz Bozorg” or “greater Naurooz” as it is celebrated as the birthday of Holy Zarathushtra.
Nowadays in Iran, the celebrations end on the thirteenth day, Seezdeh Bedaar, with people going for a picnic by streams and rivers. The sprouted lentils are thrown into running water, carrying away the bad luck of the previous year.
(Acknowledgement: Above compiled from various Naurooz writings from Internet)
The Haft-Sheen/Seen spread contains seven specific things together with a number of additional items on the Sofreh that will signify renewal, happiness, wealth, good health or anything that you desire for the New Year.
Here are these items:
Haft Sheen/Seen Sofreh (spread) for Naurooz
This table has items beginning with the Farsi letter “sheen”. This is the original custom of the Iranian Zoroastrians.
1. Sherab . (wine)
2. Sheer . (milk)
3. Sherbet Naranj . (orange juice)
4. Shagufeh . (buds)
5. Shama . (candle)
6. Shakar . (sugar)
7. Shahed . (honey)
This table has items beginning with the Farsi letter “seen”. This is the custom adopted by the Islamic people so as not to include “Sherab” or wine.
1. Samanu – a sweet pudding made from wheat germ, symbolizes wealth.
2. Seer . (garlic) represents health.
3. Seeb . (apple) represents beauty
4. Somaq . special berries that represent the color of the sun rise,
5. Serkeh . (vinegar) represents maturity and patience
6. Sonbol – the hyacinth flower with its strong fragrance heralds the coming of spring
7. Sekkeh . (coins) represent prosperity and wealth.
Hamā Anjuman Prayers for Naurooz In English, Farsi and Gujarati
In 2010, then FEZANA President Rustom Kevala requested a Naurooz Committee to create some Hamaa Anjuman prayers for the whole gathering to pray together during Naurooz days. I was volunteered to create these prayers in a book form in English as well as in Gujarati, and later in Farsi, so all our Humdins can use the book. After a lot of communications with Vadaa Dasturjis, Mobeds, Scholars, we created 8 short prayers for this book, printed it and distributed to all FEZANA Associations who chipped in their share for the cost of printing.
We like to acknowledge valuable and timely help from a number of people to compile this Naurooz Prayer. Special thanks goes to Dastoorji Dr. Feroze M. Kotwal, Late Dastoorji Dr. Peshotan H. Mirza, Mobed Mehraban Firouzgary, Ervad Dr. Ramiyar Karanjia, Ervad Dr. Jehan Bagli, Rastin Mehri, Joseph Peterson and his website, www.avesta.org, The Zarathushtrian Assembly website, K. R. Cama Oriental Institute staff, Rustom Kevala, Homi Gandhi, and many others.
My very good friend, Joseph Peterson, has been publicizing this book in his excellent website: www.avesta.org front page by presenting its front and back covers. (please see their photos attached)
Due to this advertisement in this website, over the years we have many requests for the book and our very efficient FEZANA Admin, Ms. Zenobia Damania, has been sending them requesting a donation to FEZANA. Zenobia informed me that a very few copies are now left.
Since Navroze will be here in a few weeks, we thought it will be good to present this whole book for all our Humdins all over the world. A soft copy of this book is attached to this WZSE. Hope it will be used by some of our Humdins all over the world during the upcoming Navroze.
These short prayers in this book is NOT JUST FOR Navroze. They can be used at any time. And we are making a strong appeal to all our Humdins, teachers, Mobeds and Mobedyars to use one of these prayers before a class or a get together so all Humdins can pray together.
Their encouragements and suggestions made this Prayer Book possible.
Yenghe Haataam Prayer in Farsi, Gujarati and English with Translation
One of the 8 prayers in this Naurooz book is one of our 3 pillars of our religion, Yenghe Haataam. We want to present this short beautiful prayer in Farsi, Gujarati and English with its English translation.
1. In his scholarly opus: The Divine Songs of Zarathushtra, Dr. Irach Taraporewala points out that Yenghe Haataanm verse is a later version of the original Zarathushtra’s Vohukhshathra Gatha verse Yasna 51.22.
Let us see this Vohukhshathra Gatha verse Yasna 51.22:
2. Dr. Irach Taraporewala writes: “This verse is the original of the Yenghe Haataanm verse. The main difference between the two is that in the Gaathaa verse the holy men both past and present are spoken of, while in the later Yenghe Haataanm verse the Righteous ones both men and women have been mentioned.
The first half of the Gaathaa verse has been reproduced almost word for word, with only the later changes of grammar and spelling. The second half of the Yenghe-Haataanm is entirely different. The idea of bringing in both men and women is a decided improvement. On the other hand, the last two sentences have been practically omitted and so the later verse Yenghe-Haataanm has lost a great deal of the force and beauty of the original.”
3. This whole paraphrasing of Gatha verse brings up an interesting question:
How many other Gatha verses were paraphrased like the above?
4. And we count Yenghe Haataanm as one of our three prayer pillars together with Yathaa and Ashem; then why can’t we recite Zarathushtra’s own words Yasna 51.22 instead of Yenghe Haataanm sometimes in our Hum Bandagis?
Let me leave this thought with you all!
May the Flame of Fellowship, Love, Charity and Respect for all burn ever eternal in our hearts so we can do HIS work with humility, diligence and eternal enthusiasm!
In HIS SERVICE 24/7!
Atha Jamyaat, Yatha Aafrinaamahi! (May it be so as we wish!)
Nothing is written below is compulsory, do everything happily according to your choice and convenience.
Agharni can be done either in the seventh month or ninth month. Seventh month is preferable. It should be done either on a Thursday or a Sunday.
Unlike a Baby Shower, this ceremony is not about the Unborn Child. It is about, celebrating a woman standing on the cusp of MOTHERHOOD. It is about, filling her lap, Saree Palloo (metaphorically and literally) with goodies to sustain her health, happiness and prosperity.
Generally, it is done only in the first pregnancy, as at the time of second pregnancy you have already attend Happy Motherhood.
Mother in law gets everything new for her daughter in-law (Paag thi Matha sudhi) New Green coloured saree (sign of fertility) or vehvan na kapda rakehela hoi to te sivravini pheravana.
What to buy:
250 gms. green moon (sprouts , sign of fertility)
250 gms. Wheat (Gherma dhaan ni kami nahi rahe)
250 gms. Rice (Gherma dhaan ni kami nahi rahe-Prospertiy)
One choli ne saaf kidheloo navu coconut (may the life be as fruitful and useful as the coconut tree)
Bijoroo is a fruit but difficult to get one instead put Pomegranate, slit a little and stick a coin inside (may there be prospertiy, ghanta ganai nahi tetli roji rahe)
One Big larvoo Goodi no(small, small goodies are joined together and made into a shape of a cone, may there be so much support in your life from all the people, family and friends and well wishers surrounding you to reach the pinnacle of success)
Seven small larva to be taken to Vevahis house (from both side), more to distribute among family and friends.
Sagan nu..Paan, badam, kharek, sopari, sakar
Twin banana if available
Jewellery (if you wish to give) or one sagan nu envelope to both the mother and father to be.Achoo Michoo keep ready at both the houses.
In the morning the pregnant, to be mother takes a bath with dooh fool, and gets dressed in her new finery. Make the couple stand together and do sagan (tili) to both, now the vahumai holds out her saree palloo the other 4 or 6 women in the house will help to hold. Keep a cloth in the pallo (so that the saree does not get spoilt and becomes easy to empty out the Khoro)
Mother in law will first put all the sagan nu saaman (paan, badam.etc)Now put Seven fistful one after the other (dont make it full fistful, she has to carry the weight for seven times of full green moong Repeat point no. 2 with rice Repeat point no. 2 with Wheat. Put Nariyal (coconut) Twin Bananas
Agharni no larvo (big one)You may give her any jewellry if you so desire or one envelope sagannu.Take ovarna, kissi, koti and wish them Dadar Ahurmazad ne Ava Ardivisur Banoo ni madad thi Hasti Ramti saare divase, bachaa ne lai ne bharye khore vaheli ghere phdharje and let the girl come down the patla with her right foot.Give the girl a sip of water and Proceed to dear mothers (vahevais) house, with small ses and seven larvas. (Mother will take away 2-3 larvas and replace them from the ones she has got)Achoo michoo karine, take the children in, and the mother, with the help of other women in the house picks up the cloth from four corners and keeps it in her palloo or supra.
Mother does tilli and repeats all of the above.
The girl gets off the patla. Empty out the khoro in a supra. and both the Mother and mother in-law breaks (do not cut) the tonch (point) of the larva puts it in the girls mouth point facing towards the mouth (the baby slips out safe and fast ( at the delivery time () Coconut, Dadam (pomegranate), Larvo has to be eaten, rest of the things can be taken any day after the next day along with some fresh flowers and sakar (sugar) to the sea, river water (dariye vatoo karvanoo).
The couple can go to the agiary and pray to Ahura Mazda to give you safe and fast delivery, ne hasta ramta bachaa ne lai ne gahre aviye. Mother from boys side can take the khali kidhelo khoro in a cloth to her home.
These lavras are kept in the mother’s lap with a full set of Saree clothes, whole coconut decorated with tilli (red kanku to be used), sugar cubes (sakar) and flowers.
The easiest way is to buy ready made boondi ladoo. Take your cone from the Parsi Ses “Paro”and line it with parchment paper in the cone. Break the boondi ladoos and fill the cone tightly, pressing down to compress.
Refrigerate for 2 – 3 hours or overnight. The cone will come out looking like an agharni lavro. Roll gently in chopeed almonds and sprinkle with rose water. Apply Silver Foil varakh if you have any. OR wrap each lavro in coloured cellophane paper, tie with a ribbon (red) in a bow at the top.
PARSI CUISINE: Meat Parsi Cuisine This cookbook has 34 Meat (non-veg) Recipes with instructions. Cookbook is fully indexed for recipes and with Table of Contents.
Doodhi ma Gosht
Jardaloo ma Gosht
French Beans ma Gosht
Khariya / Goat Trotters
Chicken Mahivalla / Chicken in Cream
Khari Murghi – Salty Chicken
Sali ma Marghi or Boti
How to make Sali / Potato Matchsticks
Britannia Chicken or Sali Boti
Chicken / Mutton Cutlets
Dhansak Masala Powder
Papri ma Kavab
Essentials of a Parsi Kitchen
Chaspaila Sakerkand Ma Murghi
Chicken / Mutton Dum Biryani
Jamshed’s Parsi Kheemo
Tambota ma Kheemo Potato
Grilled Chicken Sizzlers
Madras Chicken Curry
Gahambar nu Papeta ma Gosht
Cookbook is fully indexed for recipes and with Table of Contents. English Glossary of ingredients for easy reference.
Mrs. Rita Jamshed Kapadia has authored “Parsi Cuisine Manna of the 21st Century” and others, with matched digital ebooks. Rita teaches and demos Indian Parsi Cuisine at Libraries, Shops and Museums in the Greater Boston Area in USA. Author Website: http://www.parsicuisine.com/
Cookbook presents an journey into the Food, History and Heritage of the Zoroastrians of India.
Rita Jamshed Kapadia has the recipe blog established 1999, www.ParsiCuisine.com, now with 250,000 followers and over 302,000 hits from all over the world.
Rita has authored “Parsi Cuisine The Manna of the 21st Century” and ten individual series cookbooks with matched digital e-cookbooks; She was recently invited to Gleason Library and the Boston Athenaeum, Boston, MA to demonstrate and talk about Parsi Food.
Rita’s Parsi Cuisine Cookbooks are a labor of love. The cookbooks began in an effort to maintain and preserve our recipes and traditions for the next generation, many of whom have been raised in USA, UK, Australia, France, Germany,Canada and other countries outside of India.
The author Rita Jamshed Kapadia resides in USA. Rita learnt from her Mother Parin and Mother-in-Law Jaloo the favorites and staples of a parsi home. Inspired by old traditional parsi cookbooks like the “Vividh Vani”, Rita has come up with homemade recipes.
MEGA cookbook with over 181 recipes. See list below. Written for today’s generation of cooks and food enthusiasts, the cookbook “Parsi Cuisine Manna of the 21st Century” by Rita Jamshed Kapadia provides a treasure trove of recipes, along with an immersive cultural experience for those seeking to understand this ancient and timeless cuisine.
With over 181 recipes and colored picture for dishes.
Cookbook has hard to find traditional recipes.
Below are some recipes in the cookbook:
Essential Staples: Spices, Masala and Herbs
Marchu Lasan (Peppers and Garlic)
Dhansak Masala Powder
Jeera no Lal Masalo (Red Chili and Cumin)
Chicken and Cheese Balls
Jungli Shikar / Game
Bread Cheese Balls
Side Dishes: Eggs & Vegetables
Omelet (Parsi Poro)
Akuri with Paneer
Bhida par Eeda
Tabota par Eeda
Sali par Eedu / Wafer par Eedu
Papeta par Eedu
Main Course: Meats, Curry, Rice, Lentils
Jardaloo ma Gosht (Lamb with Pickled Apricots/Plums)
Chicken with Apricots
Jardalu ma Marghi
Dhansak Award Winning Recipe
Chicken / Mutton Cutlets with Tomato Gravy
Khari Murghi – Salty Chicken
Sali ma Marghi or Boti
Britannia Chicken or Sali Boti
Papri ma Kebab
Chaspaila Sakerkand Ma Murghi
Chicken / Mutton Dum Biryani
Mutton Biryani and Raita
Channa ni Dal ma Gosht
Classic English Toad in the hole
Easy Yorkshire Pudding / Toad in the hole
Masoor ma Gosht
Madras Chicken Curry
Goan Pork Vindaloo
Persian Jeweled Rice
Pickles, Preserves, Chutneys and Jams
Gor Keri Achar Mango Pickle
Lagan nu Achar
Carrot Dry Fruit Pickle/Sooka Meva nu Achar
Parsi Tomato Chutney
Parsi Patra ni Maachi Chutney
Bombay Duck Pickle
Mango Keri No Murumbo
Khato Mittho Tikho Keri no Murabbo
White Pumpkin Murumbo
Hot Chili Tomato Sauce
Fish Pickle Masala
Vadu Mango pickle
Sweet and Sour Mango Chutney
Pickled Cranberry Apple Sauce
Pickled Apricots/ Plums
Ginger Honey Apple Chutney
Rose Petal Jam
Methia Keri nu Achar
Pani nu Achar
Prawn / Shrimp Pickle
Fish Masala Achar
Vegetable Stew Pickled
Parsi Style Fried Fish
Fish Roe Sauce / Garabh Patio
Parsi Tarapori Patio
Fish Curry Parsi Style
Saucy Garlic Fish
Tasty Parsi Crab Curry
Alaskan Crab legs Curry
Shrimp Masala Curry
Prawn Patio Masaledar
Fried Bombay Ducks
Red Chili Prawns / Shrimp
Tuna Nicoise Salad and Orange Sauce
Parsi Prawn or Shrimp Curry
Kateh Persian Quick Rice
Khari Maachi / Salty Fish Sauce
Patra ni Maachi
Easy Patra ni Maachi
Oyster Drumstick Curry Recipe
Baked Creamy Pomfret
Coconut Fish Patio
Spicy Prawn or Shrimp Lentil Rice
Maygu Polo – Prawn Rice
Lagan Sera Patia with Fish
Desserts, Sweets and Snacks
Homemade Yogurt Mitthu Dahi
Topli na Paneer
Dudh ni Sev
Popatji / Popatjee
Surti Sweet Batasa
Dar ni Pori
Wine Biscuit with Currants
Lagan nu Custard
Parsi Chokha ni Kheer
Agarni na Lavra
Doodhi no Halwo
Ghehu nu Dudh
Mava ni Boi
Award Winner Mava Cakes
Mava Cupcake with Pistachios and Saffron
Chocolate Mava Cake
Mava na Penda
Mava no Halwo
Mava na Khaja
Nariel Na Makrum ( Coconut Macaroons )
Surat ni Ghari
Khajoor Ghari (Dates)
Dahi ni Cudhy
Ghee Gor ni Rotli
Rai na Papeta
Lagan nu Stew
Parsi Pilau (Vegetarian)
Sweet Rice with Mango
Zarda Mittho Bhaat
Sali / Potato Matchsticks
Brown Rice Kachumbar
Parsi Dhan Dar Rice and Mori Dal
Home made Mava from scratch
Series: Parsi Cuisine (Book 1)
Paperback: 239 pages
Publisher: Independently published (March 18, 2019)
WOULD YOU come to dinner?” Tehmina Alphonse asked. “I will prepare you the traditional meal of the Parsis in India. Our culture is very distinct from the rest of the Indian culture, although we have adopted a lot of the customs of the land that we call ours now. Cooking with the Parsis is unique in toe sense LIICL it combines Middle Eastern cooking with Indian spices and herbs providing tastes and flavors very typical the Indian subcontinent
Helping ourselves from a platter of dhansak, warming, pacifying dish made with a velvet‐smooth puree of lentils and spiced chicken, we learned far more about aspects of Parsi‐Indian culture than’we had ever known.
The Parsis are followers of Zoroaster, one of the great teachers of the East. He is to his followers Jesus is to Christians and Moses is to Jews. The precise period of his birth is debated but, according to the Encyclopaedia Britannica (11th edition), some sources “place him 5,000 years after the Trojan War, [others] 6,000 years before the death of Plato,” who lived 300 years before Christ.
The encyclopedia adds that the religion of the Zoroastrians teaches them benevolence as the first principle and no people practice it with more liberality.
The Parsis emigrated to India from Iran in the ninth century during the time of the Asian conquest and were welcomed hospitably by the Hindu priests. No one knows, Mrs. Alphonse was saying, precisely what foods their ancestors brought with them to India, but they assimilated well and adopted well to Indian customs.
“This is, perhaps, the most typical of all Parsi meals, the foods that are hungered for the world over when Parsis travel,” she said.
“The name ‘dhansak,’ “ she went on, “derives from two words, ‘dhan,’ meaning rice, and ‘sak,’ meaning lentils; Actually, the main dish of the meal is the chicken with lentil purée and brown rice served separately. It isn’t brown rice as you know it in this country, but it is made with white basmati, or Indian rice, and the
color comes from browned onions and spices.”
Mrs. Alphonse speculated that the .dish might well have had its origins in a Persian dish, known in modernday Iran as adas polio ba morgh. It is made with rice, lentils and chicken, but is spare of spices other than a touch of turmeric. Dhansak is far more elaborate, with such Indian spices as cumin, coriander, cloves, cinnamon and chilies.
One of the compelling things about the meal served in the Alphonse home was its inspired marriage flavors. It involved fine juxtapositions of flavors—the delicate, subtle spiced lentil purée and chicken, complemented with cachumber, which is a simple, piquant “chutney” made with tomatoes and onions, green chillies, coriander leaves and a light lacing of vinegar.
That, plus kheema kebabs, Kebab, incidentally, is Persian word meaning meat or fowl, generally cooked over a charcoal fire. In this case they were ground meatballs about the size of Ping‐Pong balls, made with ground beef, chilies and spices.
Mrs. Alphonse said that though she now uses a great deal of beef, in her native India lamb is the basis of the vast majority of meat dishes.
The meal ended with seductive mango ice cream, smooth, satiny and creamy as if it had been handchurned, although it had been prepared in a standard home freezer. It is known as kulfi.
Our hostess, who became an American citizen last year, is married to a Haitian electronics engineer, Gerard Alphonse, who is a researcher at the nearby RCA David Sarnoff Research Center, The Alphonses ‘ have three children.
Mrs. Alphonse said that she encounters few problems in finding all she needs for her Parsi kitchen in Manhattan. On her visits to New York, which are infrequent, she stocks up on Indian spices from the small Indian enclave around 28th and 29th Streets and Lexington Avenue. Most of the foods come from the Kalustyan Orient Expert Trading Corporation, 123 Lexington Avenue between 2Sth and 29th Streets.
In addition, she receives, with fair frequency, a “care” package from her grandmother in Bombay, who taught her how to cook. Mrs. Alphonse’s mother, by the way, is a politician in Bombay and is deeply involved in charity work.
Mrs. Alphonse says that she likes highly spiced hot dishes. She learned early, she said, that some of her American friends were not equally enthusiastic about hot green chilies.
“The first meal I cooked I made to suit my taste,” she said. “A few bites later, all the guests were perspiring from the upper lips to the back of their necks. Since then I’ve been very careful about the use of chilies, red or green.”
Mrs. Alphonse asserts that she may have the only complete set of cookware from England by way of India. “My aunt passed through New York and Princeton several months ago,” she said, “and she was appalled that my kitchen wasn’t better equipped. When she got home she sent me all the utensils, mostly British, she had accumulated over the years.”
Put one pound (an arbitrary amount) of butter in a heavy saucepan and place it over low heat. When it melts, let cook about 45 minutes one hour. Do not cover and do not add any other ingredients including water. Stir often as it boils. Watch the butter carefully so that it does not darken or discolor. When the foam on the surface of the butter sinks to the bottom and the bottom is caramel‐colored, the butter is ready to strain. Pour the clear liquid through a very fine strainer. That is ghee. The solids that remain may be discarded, or you may add a 14‐ounce can of condensed milk and one‐half cup slivered, blanched almonds to the saucepan with these solids and cook until caramelized. Pour into a buttered dish. Let cool and serve as you would caramel candy..
2 tablespoons clarified butter or ghee (see method for making ghee) 1 cup finely chopped onion 2 tablespoons chopped fresh coriander leaves, optional 1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint or use half the amount dried 1 or 2 hot green peppers, seeded or not, finely chopped 2 teaspoons cumin seeds 2 teaspoons finely chopped garlic 2 teaspoons finely chopped ginger ½ teaspoon paprika 1 teaspoon garam masala, see note Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste 1 egg, beaten 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce Oil for deep frying, optional.
1. Place the meat in a mixing bowl. 2. Melt the butter in a skillet and when it is melted, add the onion. Cook, stirring often, until lightly browned. Cool slightly. 3. Add the onion to the meat. Add the remaining ingredients except oil. The mixture may be used now, but it is best if left to stand two hours. 4. When ready to cook, deep‐fry the balls. Or preheat the broiler or preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Or prepare a charcoal grill. Arrange the meatballs on a baking dish and broil , or bake, turning as necessary. Or cook them on the grill, turning often. Cooking time will vary according to the method used. Cook until medium well done. Yield: About 26 meatballs. Note: Garam masala is sold in Indian markets including those in the vicinity of Lexington Avenue and 28th Street. 1 cup mango slices in syrupy, see note 1 cup mango, pulp, see note 1 14‐ounce can sweetened condensed milk 1 cup heavy cream 2 cups milk ⅛ teaspoon grated nutmeg ¼ teaspoon pure vanilla exxtract
1. Put the mangoes with syrup and mango pulp into the container of food processor or electric blender. Blend to a fine puree. Add the condensed milk.
2. Add the cream and milk and blend well. Add the nutmeg and vanilla extract.
3. Pour the mixture into small molds (in India there are special aluminum molds in individual sizes for freezing kulfi) and place in the freezer and freeze. Unmold and serve.
Yield: 8 or more servings.
Note: Mrs. Alphonse recommends the Alphonso brand of mango slices and mango pulp. These are available at Kalustyan Orient Expert Trading Corporation, 123 Lexington Avenue. Note, too, that the mango slices and pulp may he omitted and the contents of a threeounce package of ground almonds substittited. Ground pistachio nuts may be substituted for the ground almonds.
2 three – to – three – and – one half‐pound chickens, see recipe for chicken for dhansak) 2 cups toover dal (yellow lentils), see note 1 cup channa dal (yellow split peas), see note 1 cup masoor dal (red lentils), see note . ¼ cup val peas (dried field peas), see note ¼ cup mung beans (dried and split), see note Water to cover plus 2 to 3 cups 1 or 2 potatoes, about half a pound, peeled and quartered or cut into eighths 1 small eggplant, trimmed, or use a slice from a larger eggplant, weighing about one‐third pound 6 spinach leaves, rinsed well ½ cup cooked red pumpkin or use half a package frozen cooked squash 1 small sweet potato, about onequarter pound, peeled and quartered 4 scallions, trimmed and chopped 1 medium‐size onion, about six ounces, peeled and quartered 2 tomatoes, about . three‐quarters pound, peeled and chopped 2 or more teaspoons garam masala, see note 2 teaspoons finely chopped ginger 2 teaspoons finely chopped garlic ¼ teaspoon turmeric 2 to 4 green chilies, seeded or not, chopped, see note 1 cup chopped, loosely packed fresh coriander leaves, see note 2 bay leaves Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1. Prepare the chicken, which must marinate for a time, according to the first step in the recipe for chicken for dhansak. The cooking time for the chicken is about 40 minutes. The cooking time for the dhansak is one hour. Cook the two entities so that they finish at the same time. 2. Combine the three kinds of dal, the val peas and mung beans in a bowl and add cold water to cover to about one‐quarter inch above the mixture. Let stand one hour.
3. Empty the lentil mixture with the soaking liquid into a kettle. Add two to three cups of water or enough to cover the mixture about half an inch above the solids. Add the potatoes, eggplant, spinach, pumpkin, sweet, potato, scallions, onion, tomatoes, garam masala, ginger, garlic, turmeric, chilies, coriander and bay leaves. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remember that the spices indicated here will produce a mildly spiced dish. Add more spices according to preference.
4. Bring to the boil and cook about one hour, stirring often from the bottom to prevent sticking and burning. Remember that peas and beans tend to stick and burn easily. The lentils must be thick when ready, but if they become heavily thick. add a little water as necessary.
5. As the lentils cook, prepare the chicken according to the recipe for chicken for dhansak.
6. When both mixtures are done, purée the lentil mixture, using a food processor. Or put it through a food mill to produce a very smooth purée. Combine the lentil puree with the chicken pieces in a clean kettle. Stir in the chicken broth and heat thoroughly. Serve with brown rice, cachumber and chutney. Serve the kheema kebabs if desired.
Yield: 10 to 12 servings.
Note: The lentils, beans, peas and spices listed here are available at the Indian markets on Lexington Avenue and 28th Street, including Kalustyan Orient Expert Trading Corporation, 123 Lexington Avenue between 28th and 29th Street.. Fresh coriander is available in Chinese markets in Chinatown and the open‐air markets on Ninth Avenue, plus other sources where fresh Chinese and Indian produce is sold.
2 three- to three-and-one-half-pound chickens, each cut into eight pieces 2½ tablespoons finely minced garlic 2½ tablespoons finely minced fresh ginger Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1½ tablespoons clarified butter or ghee [see method for making ghee] 1 cup coarsely chopped onion 1 to 3 hot red peppers, depending on size and taste 2 teaspoons whole cumin seeds ¼ cup coarsely chopped fresh coriander leaves, see note 2 bay leaves 2½ teaspoons garam or dhansak masala, see note.
1. Put the chicken pieces in a bowl and add the garlic and ginger. Add salt and pepper. Rub the seasonings into the chicken pieces and cover. Let stand one hour.
2. In a heavy casserole, large enough to hold all th‐e chicken, heat the butter and add the onion. Cook, stirring often, until onion starts to brown. Add the chicken pieces and the remaining ingredients.
3. Cook, turning the pieces in the casserole so that they cook evenly. Cover and continue cooking, turning the pieces as necessary, until chicken is tender, about 40 to 45 minutes. Generally speaking, it will not be necessary to add water or other liquid to this dish. If the chicken becomes dry, however, add a littlE water.
Yield: 10 to 12 servings in dhansak. (Note: See note for dhansak.)
2 onions, about three‐quarters pound 5 tablespoons clarified butter or ghee (see method for making ghee) 1 teaspoon finely minced garlic 1 teaspoon finely minced ginger 1½ teaspoons whole cumin seeds 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce I teaspoon paprika 6 whole cloves 6 whole peppercorns 3 cardamon seeds 1 one‐inch length of cinnamon stick ½ teaspoon dried thyme 4 cups rich beef broth 2½ cups basmati rice (see note) or Uncle Ben’s regular, converted rice Salt to taste 1 teaspoon lemon juice.
1. Peel the onions and cut’ them into thin slices.
2. In a skillet, heat two tablespoons of butter and add the onion. Cook, stirring often, until the onions are nicely browned without burning. Remove from the heat.
3. Heat one tablespoon butter in kettle and add half the cooked onions. Reserve the remaining onions for garnish.
4. Add the garlic, ginger, cumin, Worcestershire sauce, paprika, cloves, peppercorns, cardamon seeds, cinnamon and thyme.
5. Add the beef broth, rice, salt and lemon juice. Bring to the boil. Cover and simmer about 20 minutes or until all the liquid is absorbed. Fluff the rice with a two‐pronged fork and stir in the remaining two tablespoons of butter. Serve on a platter garnished with the remaining cooked onions.
Yield: 10 to 12 servings. Note: Basmati rice is sold in Indian markets, including those in the vicinity.of Lexington Avenue and 28th Street.
Chokha ni Rotli * or Rice Flour Rotli * is an age old bread enjoyed in India by the parsi community.
Yes, all rice (in its natural form) is gluten–free. This includes brown rice, white rice and wild rice. In this case, the “glutinous” term refers to the sticky nature of therice and not the gluten protein found in wheat, barley and rye. Rice is one of the most popular gluten–free grains for people with celiac disease.
The soft white rotlis are made with pure (Mill ground to number 1), a very fine ground rice flour and are very delicious to savor with meat dishes or spicy vegetables. In the rainy season they go well with the diet and are easy to digest.
How to make them is tricky, folks who make these do it so well one would think it is easy but no, it is not. I have seen the indian women and men make loads of this to serve for meals. Many people prefer white rice rotlis to the wheat ones for dietary reasons.
The trick is to knead the dough very well, the harder you knead the softer the rotli. So ladies and gentlemen get ready for some stress busting exercise with your palms and fingers!
Now start rolling out the rotli on a marble or a wooden patlo. Dust with rice flour to prevent sticking. Make it thick to start with, practice makes a perfect rotli eventually.
Put on the hot tava and bake for 10 seconds. Using a spatula or tavatha Flip and bake the other side for 30 seconds. Flip again (back to the first side) and puff the rotli.
In a clean Rotli Box, store the rotli in muslin cloth so it does not dry out. Any box will work, but a chapati box works the best for me. (See the chapati products from Amazon * below)
Serve immediately or keep for 1 day.
There are 2 techniques for this Rotli. One is made with a normal dough process and second which is called “Khichi”.
Khichi Dough Method
In a large pot, boil rice flour, salt, and ghee.
Cover pot and keep for 1 minute to form the khichi.
Turn out onto your counter and dust the flour, knead to a smooth dough. These khichi rotli come out very soft, white and fluffy. Since the dough is semi-cooked the rotli will always be cooked thoroughly.
Proceed to make the rotli balls and rotlis as described above.
Note: Vividh Vani mentions using Rangoon Rice Flour, Mill Rice Flour, Patni Rice Flour which were products from the Eighteenth Century and an Bygone Era. Please use the best and fine ground rice flour you can locate. Here are some examples of the amazon products.
*Disclosure – “We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.”
Ambakalyo is Parsi Original. We used to have it at a Gahanbar / Ghambar which is a feast given in honor of a beloved who has passed away. Held as a charity event, all the residents are invited free of charge in old towns like Ahmedabad, Navsari, Surat, Bharuch in India.
Served with Vaal ni Dar, Papeta nu Gosht, it makes a tasty sweet and sour pop in your mouth.
This is a very old recipe I made to savor with my family. I found it in a very old gujarati book (Vividh Vani) that I have and I have it published in my english cookbook as well. Here it is for the world to enjoy.
Sweet and Sour Mango – to enrich a spicy meal
2 to 3 lb. small green mangoes (choose slightly soft and ripended ones)
18 oz. jaggery or brown sugar roughtly cut into small pieces (Use little more if mangoes are very sour)
2 inch piece cinnamon stick.
Small Onions or Shallots (optional)
Peel and cut each mango into 6 slices. Discard seeds.
Put mango slices in a pan, then cover and cook for S minutes on a medium heat without adding any water, to slightly soften mangoes. In another pan boil 1/4 cup water and add jaggery.
Cook till jaggery is melted Add mango slices and cinnamom stick to jaggery and cook, covered on medium heat for 15 mintues.
Uncover and cook 10 to 15 minutes more till liquid is a medium thick syrup.
Cool before serving
Note: Vividh Vani Cookbook recommends you peel and clean the onions/shallots. Next fry the Onions or Shallots in pure ghee till golden brown. (See pages from cookbook below)