A savoury Indian porridge made with yellow moong dal, bulgur or dalia or broken wheat, vegetables and spices and ghee.
Khichdi, call it a savoury porridge, traditionally made with lentils and rice in India, with many regional variations. It has very recently been named as the Superfood of India and has its own brand name now! India Khichdi is being promoted by the Indian government as a healthy, nutritious, economical, easy and of course, delicious superfood. A ‘watery’or lighter version, also know as ‘geeli’(wet) khichdi in our household! is a wonderful cure for an upset tummy. It is yellow moong dal and rice cooked together in a pressure cooker, with extra water. For versatility and added nutrition, one can add some veggies. It is a great dish to start a baby on its first food 😊
In my khichdi variation, lentils stand out, and instead of rice, I have used bulgur or broken wheat, or dalia as it is popularly known in India. It has yellow moong daal, and a little touch of toor dal too. This kind of khichdi with dalia, moong dal and veggies, is originally from Gujarat and is also called Fada khichdi. I always cook khichdi, in the pressure cooker, as is the tradition in many Indian kitchens. I have added vegetables and spices and ghee seems to be the popular cooking medium, which imparts a comforting taste to the dish. It is a one pot wholesome and nutritious meal, which can be eaten for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner. And a meal for all ages.
It is best eaten when it is piping hot, with extra dollops of ghee and a garnish of fried onions. Plain yoghurt and pickle are its favourite companions on the plate 😊
Servings : 2-3
Yellow moong dal – 1/2 cup
Bulgur/dalia or broken wheat – 1/2 cup
A mix of green and yellow toor dal, to dried pigeon peas – 1/4 cup
1 small carrot, finely chopped
1 cup diced potatoes
1/2 cup fresh or frozen green peas
1 small onion, sliced
1 tsp. ginger-garlic-green chilli paste.
Curry leaves, a few (optional)
Whole spices – 1 bay leaf, 2 cloves, 1 inch piece cinnamon
Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp.
Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp.
Paprika or red chilli powder – 1/2 tsp.
Garam masala powder – 1/2 tsp.
Water – 3 to 4 cups. Can add less water, for a drier khichdi consistency.
Salt, to taste
Wash and soak the lentils and broken wheat, in water, for an hour. Drain the water and set aside.
In a large pressure cooker, add a tablespoon of ghee. Add the whole spices and cumin seeds. Add the carrots, peas and potatoes and sauté on medium heat for a few minutes. Add the ginger-garlic-green chilli paste and sauté for a minute. Add the ground spices and stir and mix well. Add the lentils mixture and mix well. Add the water and salt to taste. Cover with the pressure cooker lid and let it cook on high for 2 whistles and then on low heat for 5-7 minutes. The lentils and bulgur should be cooked and tender.
In a separate small fry pan, add a little ghee and sauté-fry the onions till light to golden brown.
Before serving the khichdi, add a dollop of ghee and garnish with the fried onions. Serve hot.