‘Khichuri’ or ‘Kichdi’ is Indian healthy one pot meal cooked using rice and lentils and some times adding vegetables, meat, chicken or dry fruits too. ‘Khichuri’ or ‘Khichri’, which is very common and popular staple meal in Indian kitchen, is very easy to cook and at the same time very good in taste. There is no fixed recipe of cooking ‘Khichuri’. Every Indian kitchen has its own recipe of cooking ‘Khichuri’. I am sharing a common and easy recipe of the same.
The ‘Khichuri’ has an addition of mixed vegetables that we generally add to ‘Pulao’ (Pilaf) like – cauliflower, green peas, potatoes, carrots etc. But I have seen and tasted ‘Khichuri’ adding some summer vegetables like ‘Potol’ (Pointed Gourd) and ‘Kumro’ (Pumpkin) too. You can add any vegetables of your choice. I just had cauliflower, potatoes and peas and hence added these to the ‘Khichuri’. Adding vegetable to this rice and lentil preparation makes it a wholesome one pot meal. You can even skip adding vegetables if you prefer.
The ‘Moong Dal’ is dry roasted first and this imparts a lovely nutty and warm aroma and taste to the ‘Khichuri’. Since I have used ‘Masoor Dal’ or Split Red Lentil, I have used some onions too because onion with masoor dal goes very well. It could be cooked without onion too. The consistency of the ‘Khichuri’ can be adjusted to one’s preference. The ‘Khichuri’ that is served during ‘Bhog’ in any Pujo is of thicker consistency and without onion garlic. We call that ‘Bhuni Khichuri’ or ‘Niramish Khichuri’ or ‘Bhoger Khicuri’. Yesterday it was raining heavily from morning so I thought of cooking ‘Khichuri’ and made some ‘Beguni’, ‘Aloo Bhaja’ and ‘Papad Bhaja’ with it. I had some home-made Ghee (clarified butter). To add extra flavor I drizzled some of it on top of ‘Khichuri’. The ‘Khichuri’ is made fragrant by tempering whole garam masala or spices like bay leaf, cinnamon, cloves and cardamom. You can have this watery, dry or thick porridge consistency….. I like this in porridge consistency. Here goes the recipe of my favourite ‘one pot meal’ …. ‘Sabji Khichuri’…
- Wash Rice and soak it for 30 minutes in water.
- Dry roast Moong Dal till you get some light brown spots on them. Let it cool. Wash roasted Moong Dal and Masoor Dal thoroughly.
- Drain both the dals and rice and keep them aside.
- Take a heavy bottomed big pan or handi. Pour 3 cups of water and let it boil.
- When the water starts boiling add the washed and soaked dal, salt and 1 tsp mustard oil. Cover and cook. If you wish you can cook the dals in a pressure cooker putting about 1 ½ cups of water.
- Now take another kadai/pan. Heat 2 Tbsp of mustard oil. Lightly sauté the cauliflowers and keep them aside.
- In the same pan add some more oil and sauté the potatoes and keep them aside.
- Add some more oil if required and temper the oil with cumin seeds, cinnamon, clove, green cardamom, red whole chillie and bay leaf.
- When they start exuding aroma add chopped ginger. Stir for few seconds.
- Now add chopped onion. Fry till onion turns light pink.
- Add chopped tomato and fry till oil separates.
- Add the green chillies, peas, carrots, fried cauliflower and potato. Mix and add all the dry masalas. If you are not adding any vegetables you can avoid adding cumin and coriander powder.
- Add 1 cup of water and let it boil.
- Check if the dals are half done. Add washed, soaked and drained rice and the fried vegetables with the dal. Add 1 cup of warm water.
- Add sugar and adjust salt.
- Cover and cook till all the vegetables rice and dals are done. Stir and check in between. If you find the consistency is too thick add more water. I like my Khichuri with vegetables of little thin consistency like porridge.
- Serve this hot drizzled with Ghee and with some fried fritters like beguni, aloo bhaja and papad bhaja.
~ You can add vegetables of your choice like carrot, pointed gourd, pumpkin etc or you can cook Khichuri without adding any vegetables.
~ I have added dals in equal quantity. You can use dals in any ratio. Just keep in mind that the ratio between rice and dals should be 1:1.