Dishoom’s Black Dal is Creamy, luscious, and absolutely addictive

I love dal. It’s warm and cozy, full of flavor, creamy, rich, and hearty. It can be an all day affair or a quick 1 hour in the instant pot. This particular dal recipe is a riff on the dal at popular London restaurant,  Dishoom. Think: tender lentils in a rich and creamy tomato gravy seasoned with cinnamon, coriander, cardamom, fennel, garam masala, and more. Trust me when I say that it is the BEST vegetarian comfort food dish you’ll ever eat.

dal makhani | www.iamafoodblog.com

Dishoom is a beloved Irani-style Bombay inspired cafe in London. Their most popular dish is the house special, black dal. When you go, you’ll see every table with a little pot of dal alongside warm naan. Dishoom is one of our go-to restaurants in London and we always, always get the dal.

The rumor is that the iconic black dal made at Dishoom is cooked for over 24 hours. They have released the recipe for the dal in their cookbook, but it’s a scaled down, home-style recipe that simmers for 5-6 hours. I loosely based this recipe on that, but we went all out and cooked ours for 24 hours because we wanted it to taste as close to the real deal as possible. The result is a decadent, indulgent dal that you will not believe came from your own kitchen. For those not interested in waiting over 24 hours for an amazing dal, we have an instant pot version too.

Instant Pot Black Dal Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com

What is dal?

Dal are dry pulses such as lentils, peas, and beans. The term refers to both the types of soups and stews made from the pulses and the pulses themselves. Dal is cozy, nourishing, and packed with plant-based protein and fiber. It’s an excellent choice for a satisfying meal, especially served along side rice or naan.

What is dal makhani?

Dal makhani is a dish that originated in New Delhi, India. It’s a modern take on traditional dal but made with black beans or black lentils. What makes it different is the inclusion of butter and cream. Makhani means “buttery” and the butter is what makes this dal special.

dal with cream and butter | www.iamafoodblog.com

What does dal makhani taste like?

Think of a thick, flavorful soup made from lentils. This particular recipe’s flavor profile is deep and dark and full of savory flavors. The lentils hold their shape yet also burst in your mouth with the slightest pressure – tiny bursts of explosions of flavor. It’s thick and spiced with a hint of sweetness from the tomato and lush and rich from the butter and heavy cream.

Dal ingredients

  • black lentils: technically dal makhani uses urad dal, which are in the mung bean family. They’re not super common though and usually need to be special ordered, at least where we are. The black lentils that we usually see are black beluga lentils or petit black lentils. Most likely the black lentil you’ll find at the grocery store will be beluga black lentils which are perfect. Other lentils such as red, brown, or green lentils will work too, but their skins are thinner so they might break down more while cooking. French lentils have a slightly thicker skin so they won’t break down as much.
  • spices: whole cloves, star anise, ground coriander, ground cumin, cayenne, fennel seeds, garam a masala, cardamom, bay leaf, and a cinnamon stick. Whew! There’s a large amount of spices in this dish and I feel like they all contribute equally. That being said, I know that many people make their dal makhani with little to no spices and let the lentils, butter, and cream shine. Personally, I find that the warming spices add so much. Lightly toasting the spices in a dry pan will bring out their flavors and aromas, so don’t miss out on that.
  • onion: finely minced onion adds sweetness, especially when slow cooked in butter.
  • ginger: the warmth of fresh ginger cooks and mellows out deliciously. You’ll want to mince it very finely or use a grater. I like to use a Japanese style ginger grater and measure out 1 tbsp of the grated ginger and all of the ginger juice too.
  • garlic: who doesn’t love garlic? Use a garlic press so the pieces of garlic are tiny and melt into the gravy.
  • tomato paste: the tomato paste in this recipe condenses, sweetens, and adds so much umami. Again, the smoothness of tomato paste is key here. You want the texture focus of the dal to be the lentils so tomato paste is ideal compared to fresh tomatoes.
  • butter: it wouldn’t be dal makhani without butter. I use unsalted butter I can control the salt content, but I must admit, when it’s time to serve, a pat of salted butter that melts down into the warm dal is amazing.
    cream: heavy cream adds a luscious creamy thickness.

black lentils | www.iamafoodblog.com

What is the difference between black lentils/black beluga lentils and urad dal?

Urad dal, which are in the mung bean family, are larger and look like a whole mung bean. They’re about 1/4 inch in length and oval shaped with a small white speck on one side.

Black lentils are smaller and disk-shaped. They’re about 1/8 inches in diameter and have a tiny yellow speck.

How to make dal

This dal takes 24 hours to make, but I promise you, it is so worth it. It’s almost entirely hands off so you don’t actually do much. A covered pot just sits in a low oven and all you do is give it a stir every now and then. The results are incredible!

  1. Soak. Give the lentils a rinse and then soak them in plenty of cold water, overnight. Lots of lentil recipes say you can skip this step and that might be true, but I always soak mine. I feel hydrating them makes them keep their shape even after cooking.
  2. Cook. The next day, rinse the lentils off and drain well. Place them in a large pot with cold water and bring to a hard boil,  then lower the heat and simmer. Cook until the lentils are soft, but still hold their shape, topping up with water if needed. When they’re soft, drain and set aside.
  3. Toast. While the lentils are cooking, toast the spices in a dry pan to release their aromas. Crush or use a spice grinder to blend everything up and set aside.
  4. Sweat. Heat up a bit of oil and butter in a pan and slowly cook onion, garlic, and ginger until everything melds and melts into a soft paste. Stir in the spices, tomato paste, cooked lentils, and a bit of water to make everything come together in a thick soup. Bring to a simmer then remove from the heat.
  5. Braise. Take a note of the time. Cover the pot tightly and place in a 325°F oven for 3-4 hours, checking every so often to see if the dal is dry and you need to add water.
  6. Overnight. Turn the oven to 200°F and let the dal cook overnight.
  7. Finish. The next day, turn the temperature up to 300°F until you’ve reached 24 hours in the oven. Stir in cream and butter and season with salt. Enjoy!

dal makhani | www.iamafoodblog.com

How to make Instant Pot dal

If 24 hours is much too long for your dal craving, Instant Pot dal is here for you. Here’s how you do it:

  1. Lightly toast the spices in a dry pan over low heat to bring out the aromas, then crush or grind them.
  2. Add butter and oil to the Instant Pot insert. Turn on to sauté high and stir in diced onions, minced ginger, and minced garlic. Cook briefly. Stir in the spices then add uncooked rinsed black lentils, tomato paste, and 2 cups of water.
  3. Seal and cook on high pressure for 15 minutes. Quick release, carefully vent, and open the lid. Stir in butter and cream to finish. Taste and season with salt and enjoy!

Instant Pot dal vs stove top/oven dal

It’s really hard to choose, but if I had to choose, I would choose the 24 hour dal. The 24 hour dal has so much more depth of flavor! It’s smoky and rich and dark. The Instant Pot version is light and creamy. It definitely had something to do with the amount of time the tomato paste has to cook and condense down. The 24 hour dal has just a hint of tomato – you almost have to be looking for it to identify the flavor, where as the Instant Pot version has tomato as one of the first flavor notes. I love both so it’s hard for me to say if one is better the other, but if I’m in a dal-rush, the Instant Pot version is AMAZING. Also, sometimes you’re just hungry. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

instant pot vs stovetop dal | www.iamafoodblog.com

Tips and tricks

  • Soak your lentils overnight. This is the number one thing you need to do for this recipe. It will help your lentils hold their shape and be tender after cooking. Many lentil recipes say that you don’t need to, but it’s not a difficult step and I’ve never skipped it.
  • There’s a certain smokiness comes from the long braise in the oven. This isn’t a quick recipe, but the hands-off time comprises most of the time. Slow cooking in the oven gives you a smokiness that you won’t get if you just make this on the stove.
  • A small pot is your friend. Use a small heavy bottomed cooking vessel with an oven-safe lid. I use our 1.5 quart petite Staub and the depth and width makes it the perfect dal pot. It’s about 5 inches across and 6.5 inches high. If you use a pot with too large of a base the dal will come up shallow and may lead to burning/drying out. If you don’t have small pot, transfer your dal to a taller oven safe dish and cover it with foil.

making dal | www.iamafoodblog.com

Extra smoke

If you’re looking for extra smoke you can complete this last step. You’ll need a small metal bowl, a piece of all natural hardwood lump charcoal, and a way to light the charcoal on fire.

  1. When the dal is ready and you’ve stirred in your butter and cream, place a small metal bowl directly onto the surface of the dal. The thickness of the dal should hold it up.
  2. Safely light your charcoal outside and let it burn until it is hot and lightly covered with white-gray ash, about 4-5 minutes.
  3. Use a pair of tongs and carefully put the hot charcoal in the mental bowl and add 2 tablespoons right on top of the hot charcoal. It will instantly start to smoke.
  4. Quickly cover the dal with the lid and let smoke for 5 minutes then remove the lid and the bowl with the charcoal.

What to serve with dal

I truly hope you try this recipe. It’s one of my favorites and always on repeat!
xoxo love and lentils,
steph

dal | www.iamafoodblog.com

Dishoom’s Black Dal Recipe

Creamy buttery lentils, zero effort.
Serves 6
4.93 from 65 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 d

Ingredients

  • 1 cup black lentils I used black beluga lentils
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp neutral oil
  • 1 small onion finely diced
  • 1 tbsp ginger minced
  • 1 tbsp garlic minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 5.5 oz tomato paste 1 can
  • 2 tbsp heavy cream
  • salt to taste

Instructions

  • Soak the lentils in cold water overnight. The next day rinse and drain well. Place the lentils in a large pot and cover with cold water by 2 inches. Bring to a hard boil over high heat for 5-10 minutes, skimming if needed. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are soft, but hold their shape, about 40 minutes to 1 hour. If needed, add water to the pot to prevent the lentils from drying out. Drain and set aside.
    black lentils | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Heat the oven to 325°F. In a small dry pan, over low heat, lightly toast the cloves, star anise, coriander, cumin, cayenne, fennel, garam masala, and cardamom, stirring constantly, until very fragrant, about 30-45 seconds. Make sure not to burn! Remove the spices from the pan and add to a spice grinder or mortar and pestle. Crush/grind until fine. Set aside.
    toasting spices | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • In an small, oven-safe heavy-bottomed pot, heat up 1 tbsp each of butter and neutral oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until soft, about 5-8 minutes. Add the ginger and garlic and cook, stirring, for 1-2 minutes.
    toasting onions | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Stir in the spices, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf. Add the tomato paste and 1 cup of water to bring everything to a thick, soup-like consistency. Add the drained lentils to the pot, adding a bit of water to thin out, if needed.
    making dal | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Tightly cover the pot with foil (or the oven safe lid) and place in the oven for 3-4 hours, checking every 30 minutes or so to stir. Add water, a tablespoon at a time, if needed, to maintain a soup-like consistency.
    dal | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • After 4 hours, take a note of the time and turn the oven to 200°F. The next morning, when you get up, turn the temperature up to 300°F, check if you need to add a tiny bit of water, stir, then continue to cook in the oven, covered, until you hit 24 hours from the time you started the dal in the oven.
    dal cooked overnight | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Remove the pot from the oven and stir in 2 tbsp each of heavy cream and butter. Taste and season with salt. Enjoy with basmati rice or naan.
    dal with cream and butter | www.iamafoodblog.com

Notes

If desired, you can pull the dal after 4 hours in the oven at 325°F and finish with butter and cream.

Estimated Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Dishoom’s Black Dal Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 235 Calories from Fat 94
% Daily Value*
Fat 10.4g16%
Saturated Fat 5.2g33%
Cholesterol 22mg7%
Sodium 71mg3%
Potassium 619mg18%
Carbohydrates 27.1g9%
Fiber 11.4g48%
Sugar 4.7g5%
Protein 9.9g20%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
black dal and garlic naan - www.iamafoodblog.com

97 Comments

  1. Cara Rowlands says:

    5 stars
    I’m so happy you’ve created a recipe for this! I went to Dishoom when I was in London back in October (4 times for breakfast, once for dinner) and since I got back to Canada I’ve been combing the Internet for their recipes. Everything I had there was so delicious, especially the Dal! I’m very excited to try this out :)

  2. Katrina says:

    5 stars
    This dal is just…perfection! Love those black lentils!!

  3. Barb says:

    5 stars
    I LOVE Dishoom! I go every time I’m in London for business. The daal is definitely worth it. I almost skipped it too. Also, they do take reservations, but maybe only for large parties? Also, have you been to their brunch? I never thought I’d be a fan of savory, spicy breakfasts, but I was pleasantly surprised!

  4. Karina says:

    This looks incredible, I am definitely going to have to give it a try.

  5. Nitin says:

    Stephanie this is awesome! Daal and naan are my
    First love and this looks amazing! I’ve heard so much about Dishoom I only wish I can eat there.

  6. Tammela says:

    5 stars
    Dal is underrated and so delicious! A simple one come together so quickly and makes a great meal with some naan or chapati and yogurt.

  7. Nikita says:

    5 stars
    This sounds absolutely phenomenal. Can’t wait to try it.

    1. Stephanie Le says:

      thanks nikita!!

  8. Olivia says:

    When do you add garlic in your naan recipe?

    1. Stephanie Le says:

      whoops, i added that! thanks for the heads up!

  9. Alex says:

    Can the Dal be made in a pressure cooker?

    There’s no garlic in the garlic naan?

    1. Stephanie Le says:

      i haven’t tried in a pressure cooker – i’m not familiar with how much/little time it would take but imagine it can be done.

      i added the garlic in – thanks for letting me know!

  10. 5 stars
    Hi Stephanie. It looks so incredibly moorish. Just delicious!!!! I love your use of garlic butter with the naan bread. I look forward to trying this take on dal with the use of beluga lentils. Thanks for sharing ?

    1. Stephanie Le says:

      thank you!! i hope you give it a try!

  11. Emily says:

    5 stars
    Oh my. This looks amazing. Love the video of the naan over the gas – I always feel legit when I warm pita like that.

    1. Stephanie Le says:

      5 stars
      i totally agree! it is totally legit when you warm up pita/naan and maybe even toast over an open flame :)

  12. 5 stars
    Love Dhal! In fact I have some packed for my lunch today :) I have never tried black Dahl, but as soon as I have my next craving, I will be trying this recipe. You’ve definitely sold it to me :)

  13. Allyson says:

    5 stars
    OMG. I just made this for dinner tonight and it was fantastic. So much so that I want to make it again tomorrow. Serious winner right here.

  14. Anna says:

    They don’t take reservations except for parties larger than 6! Theres always a line out the door, even at the new location at Kings X location which isn’t half as nice as their Soho joint.

    1. Jenny says:

      You can get a reservation at Dishoom for lunch, though. And I think “lunch” goes until 5:30. We ate there between Harry Potter parts 1 and 2. Life-changing!! Particularly for my now-obsessed-with Indian-food 12 year old.

  15. Sierra says:

    5 stars
    Made this yesterday. It was amazing! None of the steps were much work and the anticipation was fun after working on it for so long :)

  16. Suruchi says:

    5 stars
    Stephanie this is the best post! I actually worked in Dishoom’s office when I studied abroad in London two years ago and the team is just as amazing as the food they serve there, and this just makes me miss them and their daal just as much! (: (I basically survived my three months in London by eating their daal for lunch every single day!)

  17. Catriona Middleton says:

    Hi- this looks insane! I live in East London and have been to Dishoom quite a few times. That dal… Omnomnom!

    I see you used black beluga lentils… could I use the same method with black urad lentils? Black beluga lentils are a lot harder to find!

    Amazing blog ??

    1. Stephanie Le says:

      yes! i think that black urad lentils will totally work. i’m pretty sure the ones at dishoom aren’t black beluga :)

  18. Brian says:

    To get even more smoke flavour I heat a barbeque charcoal over a flame till it is red hot. Then pop a small bowl with a lump of butter and a few cloves into the finished pot of dal (it should balance nicely on top.) Drop the hot charcoal lump onto the butter and cloves then put a lid onto the dal to catch the smoke. leave for 20 minutes. This method also is good for finishing oven cooked tandoori or tikka chicken.

  19. Kate says:

    5 stars
    I was looking for a BB Dahl recipe that would help me imitate Dishooms! I can’t wait to make it!! Thank you! I’ve been to Soho & Shoreditch, both were great. I wish I lived closer to london!

  20. Ashley says:

    Made this because I was missing the real thing from dishoom. If all vegetarian food was this good, I might actually be vegetarian :D. Great work!

  21. Jae says:

    Can this be made with green, brown or red masoor lentils?

    1. Stephanie Le says:

      i haven’t tried it, but i would say, yes, for sure!

  22. Karen says:

    I can’t wait to try this recipe! I’ve been dreaming about this ever since I got back from London! Thank you for sharing!
    Just a quick question which size petite Staub do you use? This is the best excuse for me to get one! :)

    1. Stephanie Le says:

      hi karen,

      it’s this one! it’s pretty small and perfect for making stew for 2 :)

  23. Ali says:

    Can’t wait to try this recipe! Silly question… You say it makes 4.5 cups of daal but you only use 1 in the recipe. Is this correct? And how many people does this recipe serve? Hoping to make it for 5-6 people. Thanks :)

    1. Stephanie Le says:

      not silly at all! you add tomato paste and water to the beans, which expand considerably. it depends on if you’re serving it as a side or a main. i think it will serve 5-6 as a side if you have lots of naan, if you need it as a main, i’d double it just to be on the safe side.

  24. David Garthwaite says:

    5 stars
    Made this, great recipe and the overnight cooking makes a LOT of difference, didnt bother with soaking the lentils just cooked them first, also added a little more of the spices for a stronger flavor. My shop only had Green lentils but I’ll go out of my way for black next time as they give it a better flavor. Well done.

    1. Stephanie Le says:

      i think the overnight adds a lot too – just that extra bit of hands off luxuriousness. thanks so much for making and commenting! nice to know it works well with green lentils too :)

  25. 5 stars
    Hi Stephanie,
    I am huge fan of your blog, thank you for so many wonderful recipes, some of which I have already made with excellent results. I have a question about this one (I LOVE Dishoom’s black dhal and can’t wait to make this!). Could I used pre-cooked beluga lentils? I couldn’t find dry ones and am wondering if the extended cooking time of this dish will turn pre-cooked lentils into a mush. Thanks in advance.

    1. Stephanie says:

      i haven’t tried with precooked lentils, but i think it might work. but you’ll definitely have a different texture. you could definitely do the recipe with other lentils if you can’t find black ones. hope that helps a bit!

  26. Daniel Skelton says:

    Excited to try this! Do you think this could this be done using a slow cooker on low heat?

    1. Stephanie says:

      i suspect that it would work well, but i haven’t tried it. if you do and it works out, please let me know! also, keep an eye on the liquid content. you don’t want it too be too liquid-y but you don’t want it to dry out either. hope that helps a little bit!

      1. Esther says:

        5 stars
        I’m slow cooking it as I write! Needs quite a bit of water adding to it every couple of hours. Had it for dinner tonight after 4 hrs ins slow cooker and was seriously good but I know it’s gonna get a whole lot better overnight!

        1. Bruce says:

          How did the slow cooking go? I prefer this idea to leaving my gas oven on overnight! Do you think it needs too much water adding to be able to leave it on low overnight for about eight hours?

  27. Isabel says:

    5 stars
    Wow, so excited to come across recipe. Had the amazing dish at Dishoom the other week and it’s so delicious – can’t get enough! Had to order my organic beluga black lentils online – pricy, but hope it’s worth it. I will try to cook mine in the halogen oven and see how it turns out. Thanks for the recipe!

  28. Jan says:

    Hi can’t wait to try this love Dishoom
    But confused with 24 hour cooking tines please can you clarify ?

  29. Jan says:

    Sorry I’ll try again ? I love Dishoom & their Black Dahl can’t wait to try this recipe. Bit confused about timing for cooking 24 hours please can you clarify.

    Many Thanks ?

    1. Stephanie says:

      after completing the steps on the stove (toasting the spices, bringing everything to a soup like consistency), cover the pot tightly with foil and then bake for 3-4 hours at 325°F, making sure to stir every so often. then, turn the oven down to 200°F and cook overnight – technically it’s not 24 hours, if that helps!

  30. Lex says:

    5 stars
    This is so delicious. I used a slow cooker- on high at first and then low overnight. It was so good that I regretted not making a double portion.

    1. Stephanie says:

      yay! so happy they turned out in the slow cooker! thanks for letting me know :)

  31. Ash says:

    5 stars
    Hey, thanks so much for this recipe. Can’t wait to try it. I am in the UK and wanted to check what you mean by Tomato Paste – is that the same as Tomato puree? Thanks.

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi ash,
      yes, tomato puree works!

  32. Maddie P. says:

    Can you make this in a slow cooker overnight instead of using the oven?

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi maddie,
      i haven’t tried it, but it think it would work, just make sure to check before you head to bed to see if it’s too dry and add a bit of liquid. let me know how it goes!

  33. Kittiwick says:

    5 stars
    Very good. I did 3hrs with 180°C in the oven, then turned up to 230°C for 15 min, then switched it off an let it sit in the oven over night.
    It reheats very well too, even tastier.

    1. Stephanie says:

      yay! so happy you liked it :)

  34. Guy says:

    5 stars
    Since my wife first visited Dishoom in Soho in 2015, and then again in 2016, I have been told repeatedly that it is FANTASTIC, and especially the Black Dhal!!
    In case you didn’t know there is now a Dishoom on St Andrew’s Square in Edinburgh, only 20 miles from home, and I agree…….it’s amazing!
    I now make your recipe by the half kilo (dry weight) to be frozen in batches, in case of urgent need! After all 20 miles might be too far in times of urgent need!!!!!!
    Thank you for the time that you have spent constructing this recipe.
    I find that the 24 hour cooking time is essential, but made very easy in our AGA, bottom oven. (for American readers you will have to Google this very British cooking appliance.)

    1. Stephanie says:

      20 miles is definitely a lot closer than me having to fly all the way there! i’m jealous of both your proximity and your aga! so happy you and your wife like the recipe :)

  35. Jenny says:

    Hi,
    After letting it cook overnight at 200, then in am, stir it and put it back up to 300 ( for the rest of the 24 hours,) should I continue to add a bit of water to it (if needed) and check it every 1/2 hour? Is there a big difference in taste if I don’t cook it at 300 for the last 9 hours, but instead just let it cook overnight?

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi jenny,

      you can definitely let it just cook overnight without finishing it at 300, but i find that the last bit thickens up the dal and reduces the liquid!

  36. Aline Moura says:

    what you mean by whole cloves? is it garlic clove?

    1. Stephanie says:

      whole cloves are a small flower shaped shape. it’s what ground cloves come from. you can buy them at the grocery store or substitute ground cloves :)

  37. Spyros says:

    I loved this dish myself and desperately want to cook it!
    I’m terrified of the idea of leaving the oven overnight though.
    Isn’t this very very unsafe?!

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi! it’s a really low temperature so you should be fine!

  38. Mark says:

    Just checking….are the cardamoms in the recipe the normal green ones, or did you use black ones to give a smoky flavour?

    Many thanks

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi mark,

      i used the regular green pods but it think the black ones would be a nice adaptation! let me know how it goes :)

  39. Chris says:

    Followed the recipe exactly – even slow-cooked it for 8+ hours on 200 after 3 hours at 325. It is half-decent at best and nothing like Dishoom’s.

    1. Any thoughts why this might be Chris? Any flavours in the Dishoom version not in this do you reckon?

  40. Jemma Louise says:

    5 stars
    I definitely just died and went to heaven with this recipe. I made it with no oil and no butter to make it healthier and lower calorie, just finishing with some Alpro Simply Plain Soya Yoghurt and as far as I’m concerned you don’t miss the fats. Definitely need to try to long cook version too but this was insanely delicious! Thanks so much for sharing ?

    1. Stephanie says:

      yay so happy it turned out jemma. and with not oil and butter too! :D

  41. Grania says:

    5 stars
    I made this at the weekend as part of an Indian feast for friends, and it was an absolute winner! I used a slow cooker (3 hours on high, the remaining 21 hours on low) and it was sensational – even converted those less keen on dal as despite the long cooking time the lentils still kept their bite. I’ll definitely be making this again!

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi grania,
      i’m so happy it worked out in the slow cooker! thanks so much for coming back and leaving a comment :)

  42. Ricarda says:

    5 stars
    Dear Stephanie, thank you very much for this wonderful recipe! I have three questions: (1) On the packaging of my black beluga lentils it says they don’t need to soak in water overnight – they have only to be cooked for 20 minutes. Should I still soak them overnight? They are not pre-cooked or anything else. (2) With “can tomato paste” do you refer to concentrated tomato paste or to normal canned tomatoes? (3) Since we don’t have ‘ounce’ here in Germany, this would be around 1.6 kilogram tomato paste – is that right? Sorry, I was just wondering about so much tomato haha

    Thank you very very much and have a lovely day!

    My warmest wishes from Berlin, Ricarda

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi ricarda,

      1. it should be okay if you don’t soak the lentils.
      2. it’s concentrated tomato paste
      3. a little bit over 1/2 cup will work, 0.155922 kg or 155 grams

      hope that helps! please let me know how it turns out!

  43. Amanda says:

    Hi, I went to the Edinburgh Dishhoom last year and fell in love with the masala beans at breakfast! I wondered if anyone had a decent recipe for this. It should be really simple, but although I have tried to recreate it I can’t. Any tips would be appreciated.

    1. Stephanie says:

      i haven’t tried them :(

  44. Lillian says:

    I haven’t been able to find any black lentils at all (neither beluga nor black urad), I found mungo beans and brown lentils. Do you think either could work? Which one could taste more close to Dishoom’s? I’ve been craving their black urad since last year, and I’m quite far away to go!

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi lilian,
      i would go for the brown lentils!

    2. Chrissy says:

      Amazon has them in the States.

  45. MiMi says:

    5 stars
    This dal is so good – it’s not exactly Dishoom (if I’m nitpicking) but boy does it sub pretty darn well when I’m in New York – and not in London!
    Personally, I don’t find salt at the end to be deep enough – so I salt at the onion phase, and once or twice when I’m stirring and it’s in the oven.
    With that said – i found this recipe when I was looking for the Dishoom recipe, and it’s been my go-to ever since!!

    1. Stephanie says:

      good call on the salting – it’s definitely a personal thing and salting at the onion phase helps with the browning. so glad it’s become your go-to!

  46. Chrissy says:

    5 stars
    Made this. Absolutely delicious. Close enough to Dishoom’s. I live in Florida, USA, so I can’t just drive over when I hankering for their black dal but this will hold me over until my next trip to London. Thank you!

  47. Kim says:

    Our server at Dishoom said the distinctive flavor comes from soaking the lentils in black tea before the long cook — has anyone tried this?

  48. Mark Bowen says:

    5 stars
    We used to live in London and Dishoom was a favourite, along with this particular dish. I made this and it is AUTHENTIC! Thank you so much for your research and sharing this. It is now in my permanent recipe collection!

    1. Stephanie says:

      i’m so happy that you liked it! now that the weather is so chilly, i’m going to have to make a big batch :)

  49. Laura says:

    3 stars
    I followed this recipe exactly for 24 hours and it completely dried up. At the ~12 hour mark (in the morning when i went to stir it) it looked great but by the time it came time to eat it, it was completely dry and inedible. Really disappointing!

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi laura,
      i’m so sorry that happened! not too sure what could have gone wrong – how is the temperature on your oven? did you cover the pot tightly with foil? you may have needed to add a bit more liquid during the first 3-4 hours. was it still dry after stirring in the cream and butter?

  50. Tamara says:

    5 stars
    I loved that dish so much that I’m glad someone recreated the recipe for me! I’m going to try this now. We had no problem getting reservations at the Kensington location and it was our favorite meal of the trip.

    1. Stephanie says:

      hopefully it lives up to the memory! :)

  51. Maureen L says:

    5 stars
    Thank you for this recipe!! I used it after struggling with the one in the Dishoom cookbook, your a life saver. Also can we talk about the naan!! I’ve always been scared about making a bread and this worked!! Me and my sister loved it – your the best!!

    1. Stephanie says:

      oh yay thanks so much! i still want to try the dal in the dishoom book because i mean, it’s from the source, right?!

  52. gino says:

    do you cook at 325 for 4 hours THEN switch to 200 for 20 or just go straight to 200 for 24?

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi gino,
      cook for 4 hours at 325°F then switch to 200°F for the remaining :)

  53. Manisha says:

    5 stars
    Made this recipe. It was very tasty.

  54. Vivian says:

    Hi! Excited to try this. I don’t have the right sized cocotte unfortunately. Which of these would you recommend for a best alternative?

    1. Use my 6-qt Dutch oven and try my best to monitor the liquid;
    2. Use a ~4-qt pot that’s oven safe but not heavy bottomed and still a bit big;
    3. Do everything that’s needed on the stove top and then transfer to a 2-3 qt glass casserole vessel and cover tightly with foil?

    Thanks in advance for your guidance!

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi vivian,
      i would do the last one, do everything on the stove top and transfer to a casserole and cover with foil :)

  55. shani kara says:

    5 stars
    Thanks for this. I used all the spice I had on your list, adding mustard seeds, allspice and paprika. I also subbed some passata for water and some of the purée. I ninja pressure cooked the beans with the bay then sautéed the onion, spice etc before slow cooking on high for 9 hours. I didn’t add the final butter/cream but it was lush all the same. Only 179 calories per sixth so I might add some coconut to a leftover portion.

  56. Sophie says:

    5 stars
    I’ve been using this recipe for years and it’s wonderful. Over time I’ve subbed the cream out for coconut milk and cook it for about 48 hrs (while slowly adding more liquid where needed) and it is simply divine. My friends love it, thanks so much for creating this recipe!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating