May 10, 2019 Dhanshak

Dhanshak

by JULIE SAHNI

Parsi Cornish Hens Braised In Spiced Pumpkin-Lentil Puree

YIELDSix servings

TIME40 minutes

INGREDIENTS

¾ cup masoor dal (red lentils), picked clean and rinsed

2 ½ cups water

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground fennel

1 teaspoon cayenne, or more to taste

1 ½ teaspoons turmeric

2 teaspoons coarse salt

¼ cup fresh mint leaves, loosely packed

¼ cup fresh cilantro, loosely packed, or 2 tablespoons dried coriander leaves

1 1-inch cube fresh ginger, peeled and chopped coarse

4 large cloves garlic, peeled and chopped coarse

3 Cornish hens, skinned, trimmed of excess fat and halved, or 1 3 1/2-pound chicken, cut into 6 to 8 pieces

1 ½ cups chopped eggplant, skin on

1 ½ cups peeled, seeded pumpkin or butternut squash, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 cup chopped onion

3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro for garnish

PREPARATION

Layer all of the above ingredients, in the order listed, in a 5-quart microwave-proof casserole dish. Cover and cook at 100 percent power in a 650- to 700-watt microwave carousel oven for 35 minutes, or until the Cornish hens are tender and the lentils soft. Remove from the oven.
Remove the hens and arrange them in a heated deep serving dish. Cover with aluminum foil to keep them warm.
Meanwhile, transfer the vegetables and their liquid to a food processor and puree. You may have to work in batches. Do not overprocess: a little texture adds to the character of the sauce. Pour the sauce over the hens. Garnish with the fresh cilantro and serve.
NOTE: This is a microwave version of dhansak and unfamiliar. Certainly a new way to make the parsi dhansak. I make it in a different way in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot.

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