Daal Makhani - a deliciously creamy black urad daal preparation that originated from the Punjab region of India. Black gram and kidney beans cooked with ginger, garlic and tomatoes to be enjoyed with some hot garlic naan or parathas. Serve with a dollop of our Chilli Bang Bang Pickle.
The traditional daal makhani is made mouth wateringly creamy with loads of butter and cream, however our recipe uses just 1 tsp of butter and cream and still makes this daal so tasty and wonderful.
- Black urad – 150gm
- Kidney beans (optional) – 15 gm
- Ginger finely chopped – 1tsp
- Garlic finely chopped – 1tsp
- Green chilli finely chopped – 1tsp
- hite onion, finely chopped – half of a medium
- Tomato puree – 2tsp (If using pasatta, use 4 tbsp. If using fresh tomatoes, grind 2 medium ones. However best colour is obtained with tomato puree)
- Ghee – 3 tsp
- Asafoetida or heeng (optional) – pinch
- Cumin seeds – 1tsp
- Chilli powder (preferably kashmiri) – 1/2tsp
- Dried Fenugreek leaves or kasuri methi – ½ tsp
- Salt – to taste
- Ketchup – 1 tsp
- Whole kashmiri chilli (optional) – 2
- Butter – 1 tsp
- Pouring cream/whipping cream – 1tbsp
- Whole milk – about 1 cup
- Soak the daal and kidney beans over night for about 12 hours.
- Throw away the soaking water from the daal and wash the lentils with fresh water 2 more times.
- Cook the daal and kidney beans with 2 cups of fresh water and salt in a pressure cooker. This is quite a tough lentil so it would only cook in a pressure cooker or instant pot. Start at high heat and after the first whistle turn the heat down and let it cook for another 20 minutes.
- Turn off the heat and let the pressure release from the cooker. Open the cooker and remove at least half of the black water from the top of the daal. If your daal has no extra water, it’s not a problem. This will help the daal get the lovely red colour in the end.
- To make the masala for daal makhani, take a large frying pan or wok and heat 2 tsp of ghee (we use the rest for tempering). Once it’s slightly warm add asafoetida and cumin seeds.
- Once the cumin seeds pop (about 5-10 seconds), add ginger, garlic and green chilli. Cook on low heat for a minute.
- Add the onions and fry for another 2 minutes.
- Now in a small bowl mix the tomato puree with 4 spoons of water and make a smooth paste. Add this to the frying onions. Cook for a good 5-6 minutes at medium heat stirring regularly (don’t let the masala burn as this will give the daal a brown colour). If the need be, add 1 tsp of water to the mix and keep cooking.
- Add the daal to this masala (not the other way around), turn the heat on full till the daal makhani comes to a boil. Crush the fenugreek leaves between your palms and add to the daal.
- After the daal makhani comes a boil, turn the heat down and cook this daal for as long as you have patience, minimum 20 minutes, maximum 2-3 hours. Stir the daal every 10 minutes to make sure that no lumps are formed at the bottom of the pan. If so, just break the lumps with the back of the ladle and continue cooking
- The above daal will start to thicken a lot as it cooks, so add 2-3 tbsp of milk to it and mix it in. Continue to add the milk slowly into the daal every time it thickens. This will give the daal a beautiful creamy texture without the need to add a lot of butter or cream. At this point you can keep your daal in the fridge to serve anytime in the next 2-3 days. You may need to reheat with a bit more milk on the day of serving as this daal tends to soak up it’s liquid quite a bit.
- Before serving, make the tempering for the daal. Heat 1 tsp of ghee in your smallest frying pan and add the kashmiri chilli to it (if it’s too big, you can break this into 2-3 pieces). Fry the chilli for just about 45 seconds till it is coated in the ghee. Make sure not to burn your chilli.
- Heat up your daal (if using from a previous day) and add the butter.
- Transfer daal in your serving bowl, and drizzle the cream with a spoon. Add the chilli tempering on top and sprinkle with fresh coriander leaves.