Course Entrees
Difficulty Moderate
Pulse Type Lentils
Specialty Diet Vegetarian
Recipe Contributed By I am a Food Blog

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Black Dal and Garlic Naan

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour


Black Dal

  • 1 cup lentils, black
  • 2 cloves, whole
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 tsp coriander, ground
  • 1 tsp cumin, ground
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne powder
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom, ground
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 1 tbsp ginger, minced
  • 1 tbsp garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cinnamon, stick
  • 1 5.5 oz can tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsps cream, heavy
  • salt, to taste
  • garnish, cilantro and yogurt

Garlic Naan

  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup yogurt
  • 1 cup flour, all-purpose
  • 1/4 + 1/8 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • garlic butter, melted
  • cilantro, chopped, to serve


Black Dal

  • Soak the lentils in plenty of cold water overnight. The next day, rinse and drain well. Place in a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a hard boil for 5-10 minutes, skimming if needed. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until lentils are very soft but still hold their shape, about 40 minutes to 1 hour. If needed, top the pot up with water. Drain and set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  • In a dry pan, lightly toast the cloves, star anise, coriander, cumin, cayenne, fennel, garam masala, and cardamom, stirring constantly until fragrant, about 30 – 45 seconds. Remove from heat and grind in a spice grinder or crush with a mortar and pestle and set aside.
  • In a oven safe heavy bottom pot, heat the butter and oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, 5-8 minutes. Add the ginger and garlic and cook, stirring, for 1-2 minutes. Stir in the spices, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf.
  • Stir in the tomato paste and add up to 1 cup of water to bring the whole thing to a thick, soup-like consistency. Add the lentils back in, adding a bit of water, if needed.
  • Tightly cover with foil or an oven safe lid and cook for 3-4 hours checking every 30 minutes or so, adding water if needed to maintain a soup like texture. If you’re committed and want to cook your dal for 24 hours, turn the oven to 200°F overnight and then up the temperature to 300°F when you get up in the morning. Give it a good stir and let it cook, at 300°F until you hit 24 hours.
  • Remove from the oven and stir in the cream and butter. Taste and season with salt. Enjoy with rice or naan!

Garlic Naan

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the milk and yogurt. Set aside.
  • Mix the dry ingredients together in a bowl or on a clean work surface. Make a well and slowly add in the milk-yogurt mix bit by bit, combining with the flour. Knead into a soft dough. Gather into ball and cover 2 hours.
  • Lightly dust your work surface with flour. Divide the dough into 4 equal pieces and use a rolling pin to flatten and stretch out. Heat up a heavy bottomed cast iron skillet (with a lid) over high heat. Brush one side of the naan with water and place in the skillet, water side down. Cover and cook for 30 seconds or until you see it start to bubble and rise. Use a pair of tongs and take it off the pan and cook the uncooked side over direct flames until it starts to char. Alternatively, flip and cook the pan until it starts to brown. Brush with a bit of melted butter and sprinkle on chopped cilantro. Repeat with the remaining 3 pieces.
  • *Make the melted garlic butter by heating up about 2 tablespoons of butter and 3 cloves of minced garlic over very low heat until the garlic was cooked through but not brown.