Dal makhani (Butter lentils)

    2 hours 15 min

    Lentils are simmered with tomatoes and loads of spices in this thick and buttery dal makhani that'll satisfy your craving for Indian food. Serve as a side or with rice for a vegetarian dish.

    3 people made this

    Serves: 6 

    • 300g lentils
    • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
    • 1 tablespoon chilli powder
    • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
    • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
    • 1 tablespoon ground turmeric
    • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
    • 1 teaspoon paprika
    • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
    • 1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
    • 2 bay leaves
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 5 tomatoes, pureed
    • 2 tablespoons ginger paste
    • 3 cloves garlic, minced
    • 2 tablespoons caster sugar
    • salt to taste
    • 250ml double cream
    • 6 tablespoons butter
    • 1 lime, cut into wedges

    Prep:15min  ›  Cook:1hr  ›  Extra time:1hr soaking  ›  Ready in:2hr15min 

    1. Soak lentils in a saucepan of water for 1 hour. Bring to the boil for 5 minutes. Drain.
    2. Heat cinnamon, chilli powder, coriander, cumin, turmeric, nutmeg, paprika, black pepper, cayenne, cloves, allspice and bay leaves in a large pan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 5 minutes.
    3. Stir olive oil into the pan. Add tomatoes, ginger paste and garlic; simmer until flavours combine, about 10 minutes. Stir in sugar and salt. Cook until mixture thickens into a pulpy sauce, about 5 minutes. Add lentils and simmer until tender, about 5 minutes.
    4. Stir cream and butter into sauce. Cook until sauce thickens and lentils are very soft, about 30 minutes. Squeeze some lime juice over each serving.

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    Reviews in English (3)


    Very tasty! I didn't have the chili powder, cayenne or fresh tomatoes, so substituted a can of pureed tomatoes and red pepper flakes. Served with garlic naan. Looking forward to the leftovers! For the reviewer who said this is not a soup, that's right - this dish isn't meant to be a soup, either. Don't try to thin it. And for those who think it's too sweet, tradionally, makhani has a definite sweetness to it. This was a great hearty vegetarian meal for a cold night ??  -  02 Dec 2018  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    Too much cinnamon, it overpowered the other spices way too much. Though the author did say she enjoyed a sweet dal so that's to be expected. For a spicier Dal I use 1/2 Tbs Cinnamon and then 2 Tbs Cayenne and chile powder. Other than that the texture was great, it was very fragrant and a lot of fun to make! I substituted lemon juice instead of lime.  -  09 Sep 2018  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    We loved it! I left out the sugar since I don't like sweets. I also cut down on chilly because my son wouldn't eat it. it was still delicious!  -  17 May 2018  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)