Dal Makhani is the king of all lentils (dals) in India and another must have when dining at any Indian restaurant. It is made out of whole urad dal (black lentils) and rajma (red kidney beans) which are typically super hard to penetrate but when cooked slowly over a period of time takes on a creamy, dreamy texture :) and although butter and cream accentuate its taste, it is unnecessary.
Whole urad dal
1⁄2 Cup (8 tbs) (Sabut Urad Dal)
Dried red kidney beans
1⁄4 Cup (4 tbs) (Rajma)
Ginger garlic paste
2 Teaspoon, freshly made
2 , slit
1⁄2 , finely chopped
1 Large, finely chopped
2 Teaspoon (Use More If Needed)
Red chili powder
1 1⁄2 Teaspoon
Finely grated ginger
Fat free half and half/Heavy cream
Soak the urad dal and rajma overnight in plenty of water and pressure cook it the next day with enough water, salt, half a tsp of freshly grated ginger, and 1/2 tsp red chili powder until very soft. You need to make sure that you can easily press the dal between your fingers after cooking it. (A way to cheat is to pressure cook it with a couple of pinches of baking soda..it will cut down on the cooking time.)
Drain the water from the dal and reserve 2 cups of the dal water and set it aside.
Heat 1 tsp oil and 1/2 tsp butter in a pan and add the cumin seeds to it. (It would be good to use a cast iron pot or any heavy bottomed pan with a tight lid when making this)
Once the cumin seeds pop, add the onions and fry it till it turns a deep golden brown.
Add the ginger- garlic paste and let it fry up for another minute, stirring constantly.
Add the chopped tomato and 1 tsp red chili powder and cook it until the tomato turns pulpy.
Add the cooked urad dal and rajma to this gravy, and the garam masala and cook it on a low flame covered, for at least 45 minutes stirring ever now and then (the longer you cook this dal the better it tastes)
Add some of the dal water if the dal looks too dry (couple of cups or however much you'd like to add depending on the consistency of dal you prefer)
Taste the dal for seasonings, adding more or less salt or spices as you deem necessary.
Right before serving add the fat free half and half or heavy cream and a small blob of butter.
Serve piping hot with butter naans, tandoori rotis or pulao.