Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Dal Makhani

Makhani is the hindi word for "buttery", and this surely lives up to its name of Buttery lentils! My neighbour in India used to prepare this and it was so very very good. I asked her for the recipe and she kindly gave it out to me. I altered it a bit and this is one of the several versions of Dal Makhani that I make.

One thing always guaranteed to melt the heart of everyone at your table is Dal Makhani. Believe me, this is good!

Preparation time: 15 minutes + soaking time
Cooking Time : 30 minutes

Serves : 6


100 gms of whole urad dal (black lentils)
50 gms rajma (kidney beans)
10 gms ginger, peeled
2-3 garlic cloves
2 green chillies
salt to taste

for the tadka or tempering:

50 gms ghee
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds
pinch of asafoetida powder
2-3 garlic cloves
50 gms tomato paste or puree

to finish:

50 gms butter
20 ml cream
1/2 tsp more chilli powder
1 tsp garam masala powder


  • Soak all of the lentils (urad and rajma) in water for 6 hours, or preferably overnight. Wash several times, changing the water each time. Pressure cook all the lentils with the ginger, garlic, green chillies and salt and remove about 5 whistles. When cooked, mash the lentils lightly with the back of a ladle.
  • Heat ghee or oil in a heavy pan until hot, and add the cumin seeds and fenugreek seeds, and stir until they crackle.
  • Add the garlic and fry until beginning to colour. Add the asafoetida powder and tomato puree and stir for a minute.
  • Add to the cooked dal, mixing well. Bring the dal to boil again, adding chilli powder, butter and cream. Simmer gently for 15 minutes.
  • Add the garam masala and adjust seasonings.
  • Tastes great with jeera rice or plain parathas.

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