Dal Makhani

Sometimes I just need comfort food and my go-to comfort food is usually something Indian. I love Indian food and as a vegetarian, it offers me lots of fantastic options. No one is ever going to miss the meat or fish in an Indian meal because there are just too many warming satisfying tastes and textures going on.

As I had soaked and cooked a huge batch of black lentils and had them sat in the fridge already, Dal Makhani was just begging to be made. It would have been rude not to I think.

I’m not a great one for following a recipe and I tend to make it up as I go along but today’s batch went something like this;


  • The remainder of a large pack of black lentils, cooked and ready to go.
  • A good dash of vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped quite finely
  • A large tin of tomatoes (and the same amount of water using the tin)
  • A small tub of tomato paste
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper



Well, it really couldn’t be simpler which is great because I am a lazy cook. It’s a hot country and I don’t want to be stood in the kitchen longer than I have to be, much as I love to cook.

  • Fry the onions in the oil until they smell great and soften a little
  • Add the ginger and garlic and stir
  • Add everything else
  • Simmer for about 20 minutes

This version is actually vegan.

If you want to make it creamy, you can add a little butter/margarine, yogurt/vegan yogurt, milk/almond milk or cream/cream substitute. I added just a little butter and milk to mine in the bowl so that I could keep the pan-ful vegan and it can be eaten by any of my guests and with anything that I want to serve it with.  Right now though, it’s just an indulgent bowlful for me. It would go well with rice or any type of bread but it’s just perfect on its own which is precisely how I am currently enjoying it

I think that this type of food is pretty forgiving so if you fancy giving it a go but don’t have an ingredient, fear not, make a substitution or two and see what happens. I suspect it will still be wonderful and filling. Let me know how you get on!



Author: catcandothat

I like to write, read, knit, cook, travel, dye my hair, obsess about genealogy and I'm learning to code. In my spare time, I have a full-time job and family to care for. I have previously written as Lentils

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