Gluten-Free Indian Cuisine, Part 4 of 4: Dal Makhani

Indian food, whether dining out or staying in, always has that kick of flavor that is sure to help you spice up your gluten-free diet. Our first post discussed the intricacies of dining out at a gluten-free restaurant, including tips on which ingredients to avoid, what questions to ask, and how to best use our dining cards. Next we showed you how to make Tandoori chicken, a North Indian dish with all the right flavors and seasonings to make it a classic family dinner dish.

Gluten-Free Indian Food

In the final post in our series on Indian food, we’ll show you how to make dal makhani, a lentil dish with loads of spices and seasoning and cooked to a buttery, velvety texture. We first ate this dish at Haandi, a local Indian restaurant, and it was delicious and gluten-free. However, this is not always the case. Watch out for hing, which is an Indian spice we first talked about in our first post. This spice is often milled with wheat, so be sure to check with the chef before ordering at an Indian restaurant!

Hing is believed to be an antiflatulent by some, and so you’ll find this in lentil dishes more frequently than in other Indian dishes. However, in my experience, hing is used more in home cooking than in restaurants.  (Perhaps because any post-meal flatulence isn’t really the restaurant’s problem. Patrons are usually long gone by the time “consequences” roll around!)

Below, reprinted from the Veggie Cookbook blog, is a recipe for gluten-free dal makhani. Enjoy! And tell us what you think!


1 cup whole urad or black gram lentil
1/3 cup kidney beans (rajma)
1 tbps grated ginger
2 tsp coarsely ground fennel seeds
Red chili powder

1 tsp. turmeric powder
3-4 tbs. ghee or clarified butter or oil
1 tsp. cumin seeds
1 tbsp minced ginger & garlic
1 medium onion (thinly chopped ,optional)
2-3 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
1/2 tsp. Garam Masala
1/2 cup fresh cream.
2 tbs. chopped coriander leaves (optional)
Salt to taste
5-6 cups water (to cook dal)


Wash and soak black urad whole and rajma overnight. Then, cook in 5-6 cups of water with salt, red chili powder, fennel seeds powder, turmeric, and grated ginger till dal and rajma are soft. Lightly mash the dal and rajma mixture and set aside.

In a separate pan, heat oil or butter. Add cumin seeds and hing and cook until you hear them crackle and pop. Add ginger, garlic, chopped onions, and cook until the onions turn light brown. Add garam masala and chopped tomatoes. Cook until the tomatoes are soft. Add in the mashed dal and rajma to this mixture. You may also want to add some water to bring it to your desired consistency. Simmer for 15-20 minutes. Next, add fresh cream and let it simmer for 5 more minutes. Garnish with coriander leaves.

Leave a Reply

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

© 2010-2015 Triumph Dining