Lamb dhansak

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Alfred Prasad's lamb dhansak recipe is a true Parsi classic. This method demonstrates how to make a traditional, proper dhansak – the lentils and lamb curry are cooked separately before mixing together at the end. The dish is a labour of love, but well work the effort. Read more in Alfred's guide to the origins of Britain's favourite Indian takeaway curries.

First published in 2017




Lentil and vegetable stew

Spice powder

Lamb curry

To serve


  • Hand blender
  • Spice grinder


To begin, wash the lentils and place in a stewing pot. Add the ground turmeric, potato, squash, spinach, fenugreek and dill
Add 600ml water, mix well and bring to the boil. Allow to simmer for 1 hour, or until the lentils are well-cooked and soft. Add salt to taste and allow to cool
Once cooled, use a hand blender to combine to a smooth purée. Add little water if required, and set aside
Lightly toast the spices in a hot, dry pan then grind to a fine powder. Set aside
To prepare the curry, heat the oil in a large pan and fry the onions until golden brown, for roughly 20 minutes. Add the ginger and garlic pastes and sauté for a couple of minutes
Add the powdered spices, mix well, then add the lamb. Keep mixing on a high heat until the meat is seared well on all sides
Add the red chilli powder, tomato paste and tamarind paste. Mix well, add 3 cups of water and bring to the boil. Simmer and slow-cook the lamb for roughly 45 minutes, until tender
Add the reserved lentil purée and cook for a few minutes to combine well
Serve hot, sprinkled with garlic flakes and dried rose petals
First published in 2017

Alfred Prasad’s years at Tamarind saw the restaurant awarded one Michelin star, which it retained, and a stack of accolades (including numerous ‘Indian Restaurant Of The Year’ titles).

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