Creamy Black Gram Dahl (Dal Makhani)

This dal freezes well, but do not add the cream if you are planning on freezing it.

Serves: 4Hands-on: 1 hour 10 minutesTotal: 1 hour 10 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 4


  • ½ tsp. turmeric powder
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 Tbsp. dried red kidney beans
  • 1 cup whole black gram, or black lentils (urad dal), soaked overnight in water and drained
  • 4 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 tsp. vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp. ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 cup tomato purée (canned or fresh)
  • 1 tsp. red chili powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 4 Tbsp. heavy cream


  • In a heavy-bottomed pan, combine the turmeric and water; bring to a boil. Add the urad dal and red kidney beans and mix well. Cook on medium heat, uncovered and stirring occasionally, for about 1 hour. Check to see if the lentils are soft and if they are beginning to split. If not, continue cooking. If the lentils start to dry out, add up to 1 cup more of water. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • In a medium-sized skillet, heat the butter along with the oil. Add the ginger-garlic paste and sauté for 30 seconds.
  • Add the tomatoes and cook for about 7 to 8 minutes or until the oil begins to separate from the mixture. (The tomatoes may splatter, so cover the skillet with a splatter guard or partially cover the mixture with a lid as it cooks.)
  • Add the red chili powder and salt; mix well. Remove from heat and pour over the dal; mix well. Just prior to serving, stir in the heavy cream. Serve hot.