Ironically, my mom doesn’t cook this so this isn’t really maa ki dal to me. We are South Indians for whom dal doesn’t form part of a typical meal and though amma cooks an occasional rajma masala or paneer tikka masala, dal makhani is too foreign to us and never really occurred to her to try and cook, I guess.
Her daughter, obviously, loves to take on more than she can chew sometimes (literally!) and takes pleasure in experimenting on never-before-cooked recipes especially when she has guests. I most often mess up on my most tried and tested recipes when I have guests (is it the pressure or is it the expected behaviour, I can never tell).
Anyway, dal makhani has been on the back of my head forever and I recently got a bag of whole black lentils (whole black urad dal) and I decided to try it on an evening we had a young North Indian couple. Brave, aren’t I? 😉
This is a milder version of the dish as I was serving it with spiced up vegetable pulao. I also avoided the cream that is usually an essential ingredient for this recipe.
Dal Makhani Recipe
1/2 cup whole ural dal (black lentils), soaked overnight
4 tbsp rajma (red kidney beans), soaked overnight with the dal
1 onion, chopped fine
1 tomato, chopped fine
2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
1/2 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp red chilly powder
2 dried red chillies
2 tbsp milk
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp oil
How to make Dal Makhani:
1. Heat oil in a pressure cooker and saute onions till transparent. Add salt, chilly powder and the ginger-garlic pasted and fry for a minute.
2. Next, add the chopped tomatoes and cook for a few minutes so that the mixture combines well together. Add the lentils and beans, and enough water to just cover them. Pressure cook for 3-4 whistles. Remove from fire and set aside.
3. Once the pressure leaves the cooker, keep it on a low fire. Add the milk and bring to boil. Keep it on sim and let it boil while preparing to temper it.
4. Heat the butter and oil in a pan and throw in the cumin seeds. Once they start spluttering, add the chopped garlic and the red chillies each torn into 3 pieces. Fry until the garlic starts browning and smelling lovely.
5. Remove the dal from fire and add the tempered butter-oil directly to it. Follow immediately with garam masala and mix well. Adjust salt.
Serve with warm rotis, naan or an easy veg pulao.