Creamy and rich dal makhani — literally “buttery lentils” — is probably one of my husband’s very favorite dishes on those rare occasions when we do eat or order out. This Punjabi dish usually consists of whole urad beans, kidney beans, butter, cream and, of course, spices.
Popular at roadside stops and food stalls in North India, this dish is now a classic that has extended beyond the borders of India. If only we could get such delights at quick stops and stalls here in North America! Luckily, it can be made at home without too much fuss and bother. I’ve made several attempts myself to create this dish in my own kitchen and this time around, I skipped the dairy component and went with coconut milk for the creamy element that adds to the texture of the velvety legumes. I honestly think this version is the best one I have made so far. You won’t miss the dairy. Even better than restaurant versions, because in my opinion, homemade in your kitchen with fresh ingredients and tender loving care makes for a more enjoyable meal.
The earthy flavors of the dals are layered with the aromatic tastes of cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and nutmeg, along with a complex but subtle heat from chilies, Kashmiri chili powder and garam masala, with a little tang from tomato, all tempered by creamy coconut milk and completed with a bit of bitterness from dried fenugreek leaves. One mouthful is such a fusion of wonderful taste sensations that no one will believe it is so straightforward to prepare. Serve with rice and favorite Indian savory breads, such as naan.
|Classic Dal Makhani with a Vegan Twist|
|Recipe by Lisa Turner
Published on November 20, 2015
A classic warm, creamy and fragrant spiced Punjabi bean curry turned into an equally delicious vegan preparation
Makes 4 servings
You might perhaps want to try these recipes featuring urad dal:
Spicy Urad Dal with Cauliflower and Peas
Urad Dal with Toor Dal and Spinach and Parsley
Urad Dal Tomato Soup
Savory Rice and Urad Dal Pancakes (Dosas)
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