Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Niti's Dal Makhani

I really like a North Indian lentil dish called Dal Makhani, especially the way my friend Niti makes it, her home version is a little lighter than the typical cream-laden restaurant version of the dish (which I also love). Here is her recipe, I made it tonight for the first time and it turned out pretty good! But not as good as Niti's for some reason. Will have to figure out what went wrong and update.

Niti's Dal Makhani


-- 1 1/2 c. dried whole urad dal (with peel) (could substitute regular black or green lentils for this)
-- 1/4 c. dried whole kidney bean (with peel)
-- 1/4 c. dried split chana dal

(this is easiest to measure using a 2 cup measure, fill up to 1 1/2 cups with urad dal and add the other two until it reaches 2 c.)

-- 1 t. tumeric
-- 2 whole black cardamom pods
-- 4 garlic cloves, peeled

-- 2 large onions, chopped
-- 1 1/2 inch knob ginger, peeled and minced (approx. 3 Tablespoons)
-- 1 long green chili, cut into half (I omitted this for Kiran's sake but it would be better with it)
-- 3 Tablespoons coriander powder
-- 1 1/2 Tablespoons cumin powder

-- 2 teaspoons salt (or more to taste)
-- milk, if desired for more soupy consistency
-- 1 1/2 Tablespoons amchoor powder (dried mango powder available in Indian stores, if you can't get it you can use lemon juice instead)


1. Rinse beans, cover with water, and soak for 3 hours or overnight.

2. Rinse beans again, add to pressure cooker with 3x the water, add in tumeric, whole cardamom, and garlic cloves. Cook in pressure cooker for 3 whistles, or until beans are soft.

3. While beans are cooking, saute onions, ginger, chili, coriander, and cumin in a large pot over medium heat until soft. You don't want to brown the onions, just get them soft and sweet.

4. Once the pressure cooker has come back to normal pressure, add cooked beans and bean water to cooked onion mixture. Remove cardamom pods. Add in salt and boil for 30 minutes or until the flavors seem to meld.

5. At the end, add in milk until dal is the consistency you want it (I like it soupy), and the amchoor powder.

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