Dhal Makhani

Serves 4
Total Time
3 Hours 20 Minutes
200g of black urad dhal lentils, soaked overnight in cold water
5 tbsp of rapeseed oil
2 onions, finely chopped
2 tbsp of mixed garlic and ginger paste
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 tsp of chilli powder
1 tsp of ground turmeric
1 tbsp of garam masala
1 tsp of paprika
2 tsp of salt, or to taste
3 tbsp of butter, or to taste
250ml of single cream
Chopped coriander leaves, to serve
Step 1

In a large saucepan over low–medium heat, simmer the urad dhal lentils in water until fall-apart soft. You might need to top up the water from time to time while the lentils cook. After about three to four hours of simmering, the lentils will be perfectly soft. Strain the lentils, reserving the cooking water, and set it all aside. To save time, the following steps can be done while your lentils are simmering.

Step 2

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. When visibly hot, stir in the chopped onions and fry for about 10 minutes until soft and lightly browned. Stir in the garlic and ginger paste and fry for about 30 seconds before adding the chopped tomatoes and the spices. Cook for another minute, then add about 125ml of the strained lentil water. Bring this to a simmer and add the cooked lentils. Cook over high heat for five minutes, adding more strained water if needed. The dhal should be thick and soupy. To finish, season with salt to taste. I recommend about two teaspoons, which I think works really well, but as with all the recipes in this book, I feel how much salt you add is a personal thing. Add it to taste.

Step 3

Makhani means butter so you can’t leave that out. I recommend using about three tablespoons but if you don’t want to use that much, the dhal will still be delicious. Stir most of it into the dhal and then top with whatever is leftover to melt on top. Drizzle the cream over the top and sprinkle with the chopped coriander and you are ready to serve your masterpiece.

Recipe from The Curry Guy Easy by Dan Toombs, photography by Kris Kirkham (Quadrille, £12.99)

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