Dal makhani is delicacy from punjab filled with rich proteins and fiber .Traditionally lentils and beans are generally soaked overnight or for atleast 8 hours and gently simmered on low heat along with ginger, garlic and a few other spices (garam masala).These are then combined with a tangy masala base which includes onions, tomatoes ( chopped or puree) or dried mango powder or even pomegranate seeds. Dollops of fresh cream and butter provide for the rich finishing touch. Garnished with finely chopped coriander leaves and fresh cream. Dal Makhani takes longer to cook than the split dals, but the result is worth it.
1 cup whole urad or black gram lentil
1/3 cup kidney beans( Rajma)
1 tbs grated ginger
2 tsp coarsely ground fennel seeds
Red chilli powder (accord to taste)
1 tsp. turmeric powder
3-4 tbs. ghee or clarified butter or oil
1 tsp. cumin seeds
A large pinch of hing
1 tbsp minced ginger & garlic
1 medium onion (thinly chopped ,optional)
2-3 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
1/2 tsp. Garam Masala
1/2 cup fresh cream.
2 tbs. chopped coriander leaves (optional)
Salt to taste
5-6 cups water (to cook dal)
Wash and soak black urad whole and rajma overnight.Cook the soaked dal and rajma in 5-6 cups of water with salt, red chili powder, fennel seeds powder, turmeric, and grated ginger till dal and rajma are done/soft ( I pressure cooker for 10-12 whistles). Lightly mash dal and rajma mixture, keep aside. Heat oil or butter in a thick bottomed pan. Add cumin seeds and hing, let it crackle. Add ginger, garlic, chopped onions, and cook till light golden brown in color. Add garam masala and chopped tomatoes. Sauté till tomatoes are well mashed and fat starts to leave the masala. Add mashed dal and rajma to this mixture and little water ( desired consistency). Correct seasoning, and simmer at very slow flame for 15-20 minutes.Add fresh cream and let it simmer for 5 minutes and turn off the heat. Garnish with coriander leaves before serving.
Serve hot with Naan or Paratha or even with rice.
Notes and tips
This recipe also tastes very good the following day after reheating properly.Soaking for longer, say overnight, reduces cooking time. You can substitue garam masala with cumin-coriander powder and cream with sour cream or lowfat yogurt.