I have always loved Indian food, but this love increased ten-fold after my recent trip to India. While there, there was a particular dish called Dal Makhani, which I ate more than anything else. When I got home and got past the initial ‘I never want to eat curry again’ stage (silly, silly me), I immediately wanted to try and recreate my favourite dish from the trip. After looking at quite a few recipes online, I found one here that I adapted to make it a bit easier. While my dish is in no way authentic, nor is it exactly what I had in India, it is a delicious and easy curry to make that is impressive and looks like you put in a lot more time and effort than you actually did. When I cook I generally take shortcuts to make things easier, so while my cooking isn’t exactly orthodox, I still end up with a good meal, which is all that really matters.
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 brown onion, roughly chopped
- Chunk of ginger – around 5-7cm – peeled and roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp minced garlic (reduce this if you need to impress anyone the next day)
- 2 red chillies (finely chopped and deseeded if desired) or dried red chilli flakes to taste
- 2 tbsp cumin seeds
- 250gm tomato paste
- 4 medium tomatoes, roughly diced
- 1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 can lentils, drained and rinsed
- ¼ cup cream
- In a pestle and mortar, mash together the onion, garlic, ginger and chilli into a paste, ensuring there are no large chunks of anything left
- Heat butter in a large saucepan and add cumin seeds until they begin to pop
- Add ginger and garlic mix and cook for around two minutes, then add tomatoes and tomato paste
- Continue to cook this mixture until the tomatoes have broken down and the whole mix is almost a thick puree. There may still be some lumps but they should only be small
- Add the lentils to the pan and mash about half of them with a fork, then add kidney beans. I’ve also blended the lentils prior to adding them to the pan, and this works just as well
- Add around 3 cups of water to the curry and stir through
- Leave to simmer for around half an hour or until the curry is the mixture you desire. You can always add more water or reduce for more time if need be
- Stir through cream just before serving with rice and/or naan bread
- Enjoy! This is so quick once you’ve got everything ready to throw together, and can be made a few hours in advance and left to simmer so the flavours develop more. Just be wary that you may need to add more water if you plan on simmering for longer.
What’s your favourite recipe to cook?