The Great Thing About India is that whatever or whoever comes to India becomes India. The same can be said about the Parsi community and Parsi Dishes. Paris had to flee from their motherland after a brutal invasion and India being India, proved to be the safest home for Parsis. According to global figures, there are nearly 1 lakh to 2 lakh Parsis worldwide and over 60,000 of these live in India. India is the home to over 50% of total Parsis worldwide.
Despite being even less than 1% of India’s total population, the contribution of the Parsi community towards India’s growth and betterment has been exceptional in every field from business to Bollywood, Army and social work.
India is home to thousands of traditions, festivals, cultures and cuisines. Talking of cuisines, Parsi dishes add a unique taste and flavour to an already vast range of food in India. The roots of Parsi dishes can be traced to Gujarat and Persia. Gujarat is one of the first places where Parsis set their foot after fleeing Persia. One unique thing about Parsi dishes is most of the veg Parsi dishes contain eggs and fishes too. If you are a true foodie, you must explore some of these Parsi dishes. We’ve compiled a list of 8 such dishes.
Dhansak Masala is a traditional dish made using lentils, vegetables and a secret kind of spice. Three different lentils are used to prepare the dish. The finger-licking gravy tastes heavenly when consumed with freshly cooked rice. This dish can be cooked with or without meat. Onion, tomato and garlic are used to prepare a thick gravy for the dish. It is a very popular dish among Parsi households. The dish is a perfect combination of Persian recipe and Indian spices.
Lagan nu Custard
Lagan nu Custard is India’s response to the good old English custard. The dish is prepared using condensed milk, eggs and sugar. Cardamom and nutmeg are used to give the dish a unique flavour. Lagan nu Custard is one of the most popular Parsi dishes and yet begs to be explored by a wider population in India. Dry Fruits like almond are used to give the dish a rich taste while vanilla is added for an enhanced flavour.
Dar ni Pori
Dar ni Pori is a traditional Parsi pastry. Dar ni Pori is mainly served at tea time or breakfast time in the Parsi houses. The pastry is made using a mixture of sweet lentils. Like any other Parsi sweet dish, dry fruits are added in Dar ni Pori for enhancing the taste. It is mainly served on special occasions such as birthdays, weddings or other celebrations. For making Dar ni Pori, lentils are soaked overnight and its mixture is cooked with ghee and sugar. The fluffy and baked ‘pastries’ will steal your heart.
Vasanu is a very special and rare Parsi dish that is prepared using some traditional dried herbs, roots and fruits. It is a must-try dish that is mainly served with tea. It looks like a dark-coloured Indian barfi. The dish is mainly prepared during the winter session and kilos of ghee is used for preparing the dish. Several dry fruits, lotus, ginger, peepramul and magazare are used for the preparation of Vasanu. Apart from this, dates and milk are also used for preparing the dish.
Parsi Brown Rice
Parsi dishes are very different from traditional Indian dishes. It is an aromatic and tasty dish that is served during lunch or dinner in Parsi households. Basmati rice, traditional spices, sugar and onions are used to prepare the dish. Deep-fried onions dominate the flavour and taste of the dish. It is commonly served with Parsi dal or Parsi Dhan Dar. Like any other Parsi dish, the rice is cooked with ghee instead of cooking oil.
Prawn Red Curry
Prawn Red Curry is a dish that has been cooked in Parsi households for ages. Every household has something to add to the speciality of the dish. There are numerous ways of preparing the dish and every version is equally delicious. This is very different from traditional Indian or Thai curry. The dish is prepared using coconut, peanuts, cashews and other seeds. Garlic, chillies and tomatoes are used for preparing a thick and delicious curry.
Akuri is a dish prepared using eggs, onions, ginger, chilli and pepper. It is easy to make a dish that can be prepared on a daily basis for a healthy lunch. Akuri is nothing but scrambled egg with a Parsi touch. The dish is more creamy in comparison to traditional scrambled eggs. Onion, garlic, chilli and spices are thoroughly cooked for giving the dish a rich texture. This is one of the very few Parsi dishes where cooking oil replaces ghee.
Papeta nu Salan
Papeta nu Salan is one of the very few vegetarian dishes on the Parsi menu. The main ingredient of the dish is boiled potatoes. Onions, curry leaves and chillies are sauteed in a pan. After a few minutes, boiled potatoes are added to the gravy masala. A cup of water is added for making curry and the dish is then simmered for 3-4 minutes. It is commonly served with puris.