Dal Makhani – Punjabi Style


Dal Makhani - Punjabi Style

Dal makhani is a popular dish originating from the Punjab region of India and Pakistan. The primary ingredients in dal makhani are whole black lentil with red kidney beans, butter and cream.
Prep Time 45 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Cuisine North Indian
Servings 4 people



  • Soak whole urad dal and rajma overnight in water.
  • Next morning drain off the water and rinse the lentils a couple of times in water.
  • Add a little fresh water and pressure cook for 18 to 20 whistles on a high flame, till both the urad dal and rajma have cooked thoroughly and softened.
  • Puree the tomatoes and keep aside.
  • In a pan, heat the butter or ghee and add the whole spices - ½ tsp cumin seeds, 2 to 3 cloves, 2 to 3 green cardamoms, 1 black cardamom, 1 inch cinnamon, 1 small to medium tej patta/bay leaf.
  • Sauté till the spices become aromatic.
  • Then add finely chopped onions and sauté the onions on a low flame till they become light golden brown in colour.
  • Add the ginger garlic paste and sauté for 2-3 minutes till the raw aroma of ginger-garlic goes away. Add chopped green chillies and sauté along with the onions.
  • Add tomato puree red chilli powder and grated nutmeg and mix well.
  • Cover the pan and cook on a low flame, till the oil separates from the masala
  • Then add the cooked lentils/dals along with the stock and 1 cup water or add water as required.
  • Simmer the dal makhani uncovered on a low flame for 25 -30 minutes adding water a little at a time as required.
  • Stir the dal often, so that it does not stick to the bottom of the pan.
  • When the dal makhani has begun to thicken, add salt as required.
  • When the dal has thickened, add ¼ cup cream and stir well and turn off the gas.
  • Heat a small piece of charcoal directly on the flame till it becomes red hot.
  • 17. When it has turned red, place the charcoal in a small bowl and place the bowl on top of the dal makhani.
  • Pour ½ tsp ghee on the hot charcoal and immediately cover the pan with a lid. On the lid place a kitchen towel so that it completely covers the lid.
  • Allow the charcoal to infuse its smoke in the dal makhani. The longer the pan is kept covered, the more smokey the flavour.
  • Before serving the dal makhani remove the bowl of charcoal and discard it.
  • Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and a few teaspoons of cream.
  • Serve with pickled onions, naan, roti, chapattis or steamed rice.
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