(If you are unable to view the video here, please go directly to YouTube: adding smoky flavour to dhal Makhani.)
Following the Dhungar Method to add a hint of smoky flavour to dhal, using an electric stove, a piece of charcoal, and a bowl of butter (or oil) . . .
- Set charcoal on a burner set on high and leave until it’s glowing on all sides.
- Use tongs to turn the charcoal over. A piece of aluminum foil can be placed in the burner bowl to catch any pieces of stray charcoal that fall.
- Float a bowl of melted butter or oil (or use half of a hollowed-out onion) in the middle of the pot of dhal.
- When the charcoal is glowing all over, use tongs to carry it into the butter or oil in the little bowl.
- Immediately cover the pot to trap the smoke.
- Leave the lid on for about 5 minutes. Then, using tongs, remove the bowl of charcoal from the pot.
- Stir and taste the sweet smoky flavour. It’s as if it had been cooked in a tandoor!
(An alternate method is to put the charcoal into the bowl of oil and then carry the smoking bowl to the pot. But this is not quite as effective . . . A lot of the smoke goes into the room rather than the pot.)
I have been wheedling for brown dhal for eons, not knowing that I should have been asking for Dhal Makhani!
Almost all the Indian restaurants we’ve been to in Toronto offer Dhal Makhani. But, remarkably, not one of our several Indian cookbooks features a recipe for it.
Happily, the internet came to our rescue:
Dal Makhani, an amazing dish from Punjabi cuisine is prepared with lentils and beans combined with fresh cream (malai), spiced and cooked to get a creamy texture that enhances the flavor of the dish.
– Vahchef, Dal Makhani Bukhara, Vah Rey Vah,
And we’re so excited! It turns out that Kasoori Methi (dried fenugreek leaves) is the secret ingredient (to us, that is) that has been missing!
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» samosas and chole
» dahl recipe (using toor dal – but any lentils can be used)