Mellow Mummy: Cooking with Children :: Quorn Dansak Recipe : Taking life as it comes...

Monday 2 April 2012

Cooking with Children :: Quorn Dansak Recipe

Quorn Dansak recipe
Lara and I quite often cook curry together, either on the hob or in the slow cooker. Lara has developed a taste for curry of different types - much like her mum and dad (and grandma and grandpa). Recently we were asked whether we would like to write a post about Quorn - a meat substitute and I thought that one of our traditional family curry recipes would be a perfect test to put Quorn to - could it be healthier, but just as tasty as our normal family fayre? And so, Lara helped me to make (and eat) a very simple Quorn Dansak, something I normally make with chicken breast or chunks of lamb.

QUORN DANSAK (serves 4 adults)

350g pack Quorn pieces
1 large onion roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
2-inch piece of ginger, peeled and finely grated
1 tablespoon sunflower oil
vegetable stock cube made up with 1 litre hot water
150g split red lentils
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 heaped teaspoon curry powder (we used Lara's homemade curry powder)
1/2 teaspoon chilli powder
1 heaped teaspoon Garam Masala

Ingredients for Quorn Dansak


  • Heat the oil and gently fry the onion until soft. Then add the ginger and garlic for a minute before popping in the turmeric, curry powder and chilli powder. Fry for 1 minute.

  • Add the Quorn pieces and fry for a further minute, being careful not to let the spices catch. Add in the lentils and then the stock liquid; stir well and bring to the boil.

  • Reduce to a simmer and cover. Cook for about 20-30 minutes until the lentils are soft and beginning to disintegrate. Be careful towards the end of cooking because the lentils WILL stick. Make sure you top up with plenty of hot water should you need it.

  • About 5 minutes before serving, stir in the Garam Masala and also any salt and pepper that you fancy.

Quorn dansak with rice

Mr B., Lara and I were all really impressed with how the Quorn stood up to our family curry test. You could definitely tell there was something different about it but it was incredibly close to the chicken version I normally cook... mainly because the only difference in the entire dish was the Quorn instead of the chicken - everything else remained exactly the same. We served our Quorn dansak with steamed rice, mango chutney and mini naan bread. I think the Quorn needed the strong flavours of the curry to support it and probably would have found it too lacking in flavour on a milder dish.

The good news is, I'm willing to try Quorn in some other dishes now. It is much lower in fat than some red meats and compares really favourably in price. If I were to make this dish using free range chicken breasts from my normal supermarket, the meat content would have cost me about £8 but this packet of Quorn cost just £3. If I could replace just one meat dish per week with Quorn I could reduce my fat intake, grocery costs and, potentially, my impact on the environment (although I admit I haven't researched the last of those yet).

There are loads of everyday recipes on the Quorn website that feature Quorn instead of their traditional meat content. You can also find more recipes from REAL people like me (well, I'm real aren't I?) on their facebook page where I intend to share my Quorn Dansak recipe too.

This is a sponsored post but that doesn't stop it being a fascinating read - does it?

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