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Soak the lentils in plenty of water for at least 12 hours. Drain and rinse well.
To cook the lentils, bring the measured water to the boil in a 2.5 litre (4½ pint) saucepan. Add the lentils and half the ginger. When it returns to the boil, stir to ensure nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Boil for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat to very low and simmer for a further 1 hour or so, stirring from time to time.By this time, the lentils should have absorbed all the water and be soft not al dente.
Heat the ghee in a 2.5 litre (4½ pint) ovenproof casserole dish. Add the masala and stir-fry for 1 minute or so. Add the garlic, onion paste and the remaining ginger and stir-fry for a further 2 minutes. Mix in the lentils.
Add the tomato puree, tinned tomatoes and garam masala to the lentils. Cook for a further 15 minutes, adding a cupcful or two of water as needed so as to retain a pouring consistency.
Put the casserole in a preheated oven, 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4, and cook for at least 3 hours. Check the consistency of the mixture every 40 minutes or so – adding water to maintain the pouring consistency.
On your fourth check, add the cream, butter and salt and give it a final 20 or so minutes cooking in the oven with the oven switched off.