Low Fat Daal Makhani

Daal Makhani is one of my favourite lentil dishes.  I've been making this recipe for over 2 years.  It's taken me so long to post because I have had the most difficult time photographing it.  Every time I took a picture it just looked so unappetizing.  This past week I finally got a picture I am happy with!

Prior to finding this recipe, I had searched for a long time on how to make Daal Makhani.  The first step was figuring out what type of daal to use.  Then I tried several recipes without any luck until I came across one on Can't Live Without.  This was the recipe I was searching for!  It has become a family favourite.  I now prefer this recipe to the one I get in restaurants.  Whenever we order Daal Makhani in a restaurant, it is skimpy on the daal.  One key ingredient in this recipe is Kasoori Methi.  Don't skip this ingredient because it will make a huge difference.

When making this recipe, you need to plan ahead and soak the lentils and kidney beans the night before.  Whole Urad Daal takes a lot longer to cook than Masoor Daal or Red Split Lentil.  In fact, after soaking overnight, the daal and kidney beans are cooked in a pressure cooker.  I've also lightened this recipe up by reducing the amount of butter and using sour cream instead of cream.  I hope you enjoy this as much as we do!

Lightened-Up Daal Makhani
Adapted from Can't Live Without

3/4 cup whole black urad daal (soaked overnight)
1/4 cup dried kidney beans (soaked overnight)
3 cups water
1 tsp salt (or to taste)
2 tbsp oil
1/4 tsp cumin seeds
2 tbsp garlic ginger paste
1/4 tsp turmeric
4 tbsp tomato paste
1/2 tsp cayenne/lal mirchi (or to taste)
1/4 tsp cumin powder
1/4 tsp coriander powder
2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tsp kasoori methi
1/4 tsp garam masala
3 tbsp sour cream (I used light)

To a pressure cooker, add daal, kidney beans, water and salt.  Cook in your pressure cooker until tender.  In mine, it takes 15-20 minutes.  Set a strainer over a bowl,  Drain the daal (you are going to use the liquid later on).

Before starting to cook keep a glass of water nearby.  Whenever you feel like the spices are starting to stick too much to the bottom of the pot, add a little bit of water to loosen it up.

In a pot, heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the cumin seeds and reduce heat to medium-low.  Let them sizzle until you smell the aroma and then add the garlic ginger paste and turmeric.  Saute for a couple of minutes.

Next add the tomato paste and cayenne.  Cook this on low for 8-10 minutes.

Add the cumin and coriander powder and saute for a couple of minutes.

Add the butter and when it has melted add the reserved lentil water.  Cook this for 5 minutes.

Add the lentils, garam masala and kasoori methi.  I liked to rub the kasoori methi in the palm of my hand before adding.  Add more water if the daal is too thick.  Cover with the lid slightly ajar and cook for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Stir in sour cream.  Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.  Enjoy with some naan or on top of basmati rice.

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  1. Never made daal makhani before - this is definitely something delicious I need to try!

  2. This is the one daal I've never made at home. Eat it at restaurants but never been inspired to make it at home. I have a bag of frozen red kidney beans leftover from last weeks chilli. I should try this, it looks delicious! And the photography is great :)

  3. I love daal makhani but never get it right at home... got to try your version...

  4. I love love love this shot! Love the rice bag too!
    So I had no idea that dal makhni was made with urud dal! I always assumed that it was made with masoor dal with skins. And I love the addition of kidney beans!

    1. Thanks Henna! The first time I started making it I used Whole Masoor and I could tell right away it was the wrong daal. I saw someone selling one of the rice bags on Etsy...I couldn't believe it! So I thought that might make a good prop in a picture :)


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