This is a creamy gluten free lentil gravy and is a celebrated recipe made in every punjabi household. Though butter is what gives this a beautiful flavour, vegans reading this, you can still make this without butter or fresh cream. Replace or skip and I bet this will still be so so flavourful. Black lentils are a rich source of Phosphorus which works very well with Calcium to build our bones. The high fibre content is good for the heart and diabetes and also aids in lowering cholesterol. This is a very easy recipe and tastes best with steamed basmati rice or naan with an extra dash of butter or ghee! This is also known as Maa ki Dal (Mom’s Dal) or Kali Dal (Black Dal). This is one of those recipes that tastes even better when eaten the next day!

3/4 Cup Black Lentils (Whole Urad)
1/4 Cup Kidney Beans (Rajma)
3 Cups Water
2 Tbsp Butter
1 Tsp Cumin Seeds (Jeera)
1 Tbsp Ginger-Garlic Paste
1 Green Chilli
1 Inch Cinnamon Stick (Dalchini)
1 Bay Leaf (Tej Patta)
3 Cloves (Lavang)
2 Cardamom (Elaichi)
1 Black Cardamom (Badi Elaichi)
3/4 Tsp Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder
1 Tsp Kasoori Methi
3 Tbsp Coriander Leaves
1 Tsp Fresh Cream (Optional)



  • Wash the soaked Black Lentils & Kidney Beans thoroughly. Drain the water.
  • Don’t confuse black lentils with black gram or any other black grain. The one used for this recipe is white from the inside with a small white head on the outside. Also I’ve used pink Kidney Beans. You can use the red ones too. Check pictures below.
  • Add this to a pressure cooker and add 3 cups of water.
  • With the whistle on, close the lid and wait for one whistle on high flame.
  • Reduce the flame and take 3-4 more whistles. Depending on the quality of grains and the size of cooker and quantity, the time may differ.
  • Open and check if they are cooked well after the steam from the pressure cooker releases.
  • If not then let it whistle for 2-3 more times. The lentils and beans should be easily pressed between your fingers just like cooked green peas. It shouldn’t be even the slightest bit hard. Keep this aside.
  • Add roughly chopped tomatoes in the grinder and blend into a smooth paste. You can use readymade tomato purée instead. Keep aside.
  • Now in a large wide pan, add butter. Vegans can use oil or vegan butter as an alternative.
  • To this add the whole spices – cumin seeds, black cardamom, green cardamom, cloves, cinnamon and bay leaf. Sauté for a minute.
  • Add chopped green chillies.
  • Also add the ginger garlic paste and sauté for another minute.
  • Now add the chopped onions and cook until they turn lightly brown.
  • Now add the tomato purée and cook for a 3-4 minutes.
  • Now add Kashmiri red chilli powder and mix well.
  • Now add the boiled lentils and beans.
  • Add salt as per taste and combine everything well.
  • Add fresh cream. This is optional. You can also add a little milk or skip completely.
  • Add kasoori methi and fresh coriander leaves.
  • You can also add extra butter to make this creamier in texture and taste.
  • This is supposed to be a thick gravy so add little water if necessary.
  • Serve hot with steamed rice or with Indian flatbreads like naan, makki roti, kulcha or roti.
  • Leftover? Store it the refrigerator, heat and eat later. This is one of those recipes that taste better the next day. In fact I’m planning to make it the previous night just to enjoy the taste the following day.

Looking forward for your love & support. Do like & comment. If you wish to receive an email every time I post a new article, follow my blog for an update. And subscribe to receive a FREE E-BOOK on Top 10 Indian Kitchen Hacks. Only limited copies!

This is how black lentils used to make this recipe looks like. Don’t confuse this with black gram or any other black grain. This is white from the inside with a small white head on the outside.
Tastes heavenly with steamed basmati rice
Follow my love for food, travel & more



Divyashree Mangalorkar Gupta
6 Countries & many more to go
Mumbai, India


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