Khichdi is mainly considered a comfort food and is usually cooked when one is not feeling well. The combination of rice and lentils with just the basic seasoning is supposed to be easy on the stomach. My recipe here kicks it up a notch by adding some ‘masala’ and thereby making it a dish which can be eaten at any time. This is a one pot dish and I make it when I am feeling lazy and want to prepare a quick meal.
- Basmati rice - 1 cup
- Red lentils or masoor daal - 1 cup
- Onions - 2, sliced lengthwise
- Garlic - 5 cloves
- Ginger - 1 inch piece
- Green chillies - 5 (more or less depending on your taste)
- Green cardamom pods - 2
- Cloves - 5
- Cinnamon stick - 1 inch piece
- Black peppercorns - 1/2 tsp
- Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
- Mixed vegetables - 1 cup (I used carrots, French beans, green peas, cabbage and 1 potato)
- Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
- Oil - 2 tbsp
- Salt to taste
- Cilantro - for garnish
Wash and soak the rice and red lentils in water.
In a small skillet, dry roast the cardamom seeds, cloves, cinnamon stick, black peppercorns and cumin seeds till fragrant. When cool, put the roasted spices in the blender (or in my case, coffee grinder) and blend to a fine powder.
Using a food processor, mince the ginger, garlic and green chillies.
Heat oil in a stockpot. Add onions and fry till transparent. Put in the minced garlic, ginger and green chillies. Fry till it gives out a nice aroma.
Add the powdered spices and fry for five minutes or so.
Put in the mixed vegetables and mix well.
Drain the rice and lentils in a colander and add to the stockpot. Mix well. Add the required amount of water and salt to taste. Cover and cook till done. Garnish with finely chopped cilantro.
Serve hot with onion and tomato raita.
- Normally you add rice and water ratio as 1:2, for this dish, you can add a little less water if you do not want the Khichdi to be soft and mushy.
- This dish can also be prepared in the pressure cooker if required. I am used to making all my rice dishes in the stockpot.