Am a South Indian, and I hadn’t tasted Khichdi for the first 25 yrs of my life, but now it is my all-time favourite comfort food.
Known to be eaten when one is not well , every household has its own recipe for this dish.
Khichdi is something I eat when I am all by myself. I have Khichdi when am travelling and have to order room service. It is my first option when I don’t know what to eat, and is still my first option even when I have a fridge full of veggies. Healthy, easy to make, and packed with proteins, what’s not to like in this one?
Khichdi is special to me in many ways. I tasted my first khichdi at K & R’s house, our very good friends and neighbours back then, at our first house. I was a kitchen noob, and we used to eat at their house atleast twice a week, and since K was also a working woman, she used to make khichdi often, the easiest dish ever that it is. I used to eat it in awed wonder , telling myself this HAD to be the best dinner ever. It indeed was/is, the times, the friendships, and the long dinners sprawling into late evenings. Sigh. Good good times!
Since K was my Guru for Khichdi and for many other kitchen related questions I had back then, my recipe of Khichdi is hers. I do not make any changes to that one, coz that is sacrosanct. And the husband likes it that way too.
Like mentioned before, everyone has their own recipe for Khichdi. Mine resembles regular rice, but with lentils in it. There is one more which has all different lentils in it. And then, there is one by my cook. My most favourite. I love it so much that its a regular feature in the house, and even the cook now knows that this is my weakness. He could be behaving badly for a full week, and he has to make this awesome khichdi for me just once a week, and I forgive him for all the late-latif-giri, and unannounced leaves.
Only recently did I notice how dependent I am on him for this recipe, and so I made him teach me this one. Turns out its extremely simple and easy, and he was chuckling all along as he was explaining this one to me, and even gave me a bonus dialogue – “madam, itna kuch banate ho, yeh nahi aata aapko” [Literally means , you make so many different varieties, don’t you even know this one? :-)]
So here it is… my most-favourite ever Khichdi recipe, my cook’s recipe.
Ingredients [Serves 1, takes only 20 mins to make]
Ghee – 1 Tbsp
Cumin seeds – 1/2 Tbsp
Mustard seeds – 1/4 Tbsp
Asafoetida (Hing) – A pinch
Rice – 1/4 C, soaked in water for at least 10 mins
Yellow Moong Dal – 1/4 C , soaked in water for at least 10 mins
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Salt – To taste
Boiling water – 1.5 C (3 times the quantity of Rice and Dal)
Coriander leaves – For garnish
In a non-stick pan, heat the ghee, and add the mustard and cumin seeds. Once they splutter, add the turmeric powder and hing. Add the rice + dal mixture, salt and boiling water to this.
Cover the pan, and let it be on high flame for 5 minutes. Let this be on medium flame for another 15 mins.
Khichdi is done when the rice and dal are cooked, and resemble a porridge like texture.
Turn off the heat, transfer to a bowl, garnish with coriander leaves, and savour it with a pickle.