Dal Makhni

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Punjabi cuisine is known for versatile dishes rich in buttery flavours in both vegetarian and meat dishes. Butter and Clarified butter / Ghee is extensively used. Traditional Punjabi thali consists of various types of breads; some are baked in the tandoor such as tandoori roti, lachha paratha, naan and kulcha with Dahi and Aachar (Yogurt and Pickle) .There are breads that are shallow fried such as parantha and deep fried such as puri and Bhatura accompanied with chole.The list of yummy dishes is endless.
I am a great fan of Dal Makhni. Although I have not used any cream, it was totally lip smacking and thoroughly enjoyed by my family.

Recipe for Dal Makhani:
150 Gms whole urad dal / Black gram
50 Gms Rajma / Kidney Beans
3.5 cups water to Pressure Cook
1 Onion finely chopped (Medium Sized)
2 Green chilies slit and 1 Green Chilli chopped
2 Tsp ginger garlic paste
3 Large tomatoes
½ Tsp cumin seeds
3 Cloves
3 Green cardamoms
1 Inch cinnamon
1 Medium Tej patta /Bay leaf
¾ tsp red chili powder
2 Pinches of nutmeg powder
3 tbsp butter unsalted
Salt to Taste


Soak both Whole urad dal and rajma/kidney beans overnight in enough water.
Rinse both the lentils a few times in water. Drain the water and
then add them in a pressure cooker. Add 3.5 cups water, slit green chilies and
a little salt. Pressure cook for 18 to 20 whistles on a high flame, till both the urad dal and rajma have cooked thoroughly and softened. Keep the cooked beans aside.Blend tomatoes to fine puree.
Heat a Pan, Add 3 Tbsp butter, cumin seeds, cloves, green cardamoms, 1 inch cinnamon and tej patta/bay leaf. Saute till you can smell the aroma of spices.
Now add finely chopped onions. Saute the onions on a low flame till they turn slightly brown.Add ginger garlic paste. Saute for 2 mins.Add the blended tomato puree and mix well.Now add red chili powder and nutmeg powder.Stir very well and medium flame.Add the cooked urad dal and rajma beans along with the stock. Add water if you feel it is too thick.

Let it simmer uncovered on a low flame. Keep stirring in between so that the beans don’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
Once the dal makhani has begun to thicken, add salt as per taste.
The longer you keep dal makhani to simmer, the better it tastes. I had kept for 30 mins minutes on a low flame. Do keep on stirring at regular intervals.

Garnish with chopped Green Chillies. Cover and keep the dal makhani for 10 mins.

Serve hot with Phulkas/Rotis / Steamed Rice.

PS: I have not used any cream. You can add if you want to make it more rich in taste.Even without the cream it was finger licking good.


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0 thoughts on “Dal Makhni”

  1. This is the 2nd dal recipe I’ve read that I’m now desperate to try. I love dal, but tend to always make mine with split red lentils. Time for a change I think.

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