Dal Gosht (Meat in Lentils)

I love the way food helps connect to the roots and the tradition. The word ‘Gosht’ transliterates to meat in Persian. Dal Gosht which means, mutton or meat cooked in lentils, finds its roots in Lahori cuisine.
This royally delicious but noble dish is a meal made in heaven.

Dal Gosht
Cooking Time: 1 hour
Serves: 5

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 kg lamb boneless and cubed
  • 1/2 cup toor dal (pigeon pea)
  • 2 tbsps ghee + 1 tbsp vegetable cooking oil ( optional)
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 onion finely sliced
  • 1/2 tbsp ginger paste
  • 1 tbsp garlic paste
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala powder
  • 2 large tomatoes chopped fine or 1 can of chopped tomatoes
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tsps lime juice
  • Chopped corriander for garnish

Method:

1. Pressure cook the toor dal and keep aside.
2. Heat the ghee in a deep pan. Add oil (optional). Ghee has high boiling point and can withstand high heat. So doesn’t burn easily.
I prefer adding a tsp of oil for balance.
3. When hot, add the cumin seeds. Fry till they release aroma, but don’t let them burn.
4. Add the onions and fry till they are soft and translucent.
5. Now add ginger and garlic pastes and fry for a minute.
6. Add all the spice powders – coriander, cumin, turmeric, red chilli and garam masala powder and fry till the oil separates from the masala. Stir so that the masala doesn’t burn.
7. Add tomatoes and fry till soft. Leave the lid on for 2-3 minutes, so they soften fast and also the masala doesn’t burn.
8. Smoosh the mixture a bit, so that the onions and tomatoes mix well, leaving no chunks.
9. Now add the lamb, salt to taste and stir well. Fry till browned.
10. Now add the cooked toor dal and mix.
11. Add water as per the consistency you desire.
12. Leave the lid on and let it simmer on medium heat till the meat is cooked and tender.
13. Add lime juice and garnish with chopped corriander while plating.

P.S.: A perfect companion for Pulao and Jeera Rice. Also with all type of Indian breads (chapati, tandoori roti, roomali roti, naan, paratha, etc.)
I always drizzle a little more ghee while garnishing.
Forget the calories and rejoice in its flavour 🙂

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Persian Darbar, Andheri East

Nothing entices my taste buds as does Moghlai food. Cooked in aromatic spices and fresh herbs, the flavours linger in your mouth even after you are done eating. Persian Darbar is a perfect deal for Moghlai, North Indian, Tandoori and Chinese cuisine.
We’d been a number of times to their branch on the Linking Road, Bandra West to devour their ever-famous Dum Biryani. And each time I passed by the one in Saki Naka, Andheri (E), I always remembered just that. Finally, we couldn’t hold back our craving and made our way to the grand looking restaurant.
PD1
Ambience is mesmerising and you are treated with a royal Persian feel. The chandeliers, the seating, the lighting…doesn’t impugn the fact of it being a Persian restaurant to the core.
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So does the reception…  Craving for some privacy, they also have a private AC section upstairs.
PD5
They have a never-ending menu comprising of not only the Moghlai and Punjabi dishes like tandoori, grilled, raans,  biryanis and sea-food but also an array of Chinese dishes.
A good wholesome meal for two can cost you Rs. 1000 – Rs. 1300/-. That makes Persian Darbar cost-effective also.

For starters we ordered the Chicken Special Mix Kebab – a platter of Murgh Hyderabadi, Murgh Jalandhari and Murgh Dahi Lasuni Kebabs. All of which were melt-in-your mouth and strikingly delicious. I wished I could grab a more of them, but the platter was to be shared between the two of us 😦
PD4
Mutton Biryani served as main course was incredible. It was way better than the one served in their Bandra outlet and the best among all the Biryanis I’ve had anywhere else in Mumbai. Silky soft rice with yummy masala, perfectly cooked and tenderized mutton pieces are bound to vow you. This should undoubtedly make Persian Darbar the “King of Biryanis”.
PD2
We ordered for a Coke but much to our dismay, the waiter said Persian Darbar is a Muslim Restaurant and Coke and other aerated beverages were banned in there. All these beverages are banned in all the other Muslim restaurants too. When quizzed about the reason, the guy couldn’t give an answer that would satisfy us or anyone else for that matter. Bizarre is the word!

They had their own local product instead, the Big Cola, which he said was sweeter than the others. Not chancing it, we settled for a Fresh Lime Soda.

Last but not the least was the Caramel Custard with its sweetness to perfection. Keeping the calorie-obsessed mind aside, we went for seconds 🙂
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Service, I give a 11/10. If you ever happen to visit Persian Darbar, and if you are in luck, a person somewhere in his 50s might serve you. I respect his attitude and salute his service. Don’t hesitate to loosen your purse strings while tipping.

Persian Darbar hits all my check-boxes – ambience, service, food…
Except for the Coke disaster which seemed a bit racist, rest everything here is perfect.
A must visit for every Moghlai food and Biryani lover.