In sickness and in health, Gujarati Khichdi is all I need. It’s the ultimate comfort food that we have been eating since my brother and I were children. Khichdi is a dish which I crave whenever I’ve been away on holiday or I’ve had many days of rich foods and I just want something simple. This dish for me is a soothing hug in the autum months when the days are colder and the nights are long. It’s like having your favourite blacket wrapped around you for comfort.
It’s the dish that I make when I want someothing quick but nutrious, filling and satisfying. When I make this pot of glory, I usually make a large quantity as it goes down a well with everyone here at home. The beautiful aroma of the rice and lentils remind me of my childhood years in my mums kitchen; HOME. Khichdi was and still is considered to be the go to food for any mother or grandmother for the little ones.
The delicious porridge resembling and ghee beaten pot of glory is very often served with plain yogurt, chaas and ringan no ooro with bhajra na rotla. Or it can be eaten by itself, plain and simple. Yummy and satifying. When thinking about khichdi, the consistancy and texture of risotto comes to mind. It looks nothing like your average pilau or biryani, but instead a filling lentil and rice porridge with subtle spices.
Each region of India has its own version of khichdi, some spiced and some not. Even within Gujarat, the different areas have their own unique version but overall it is loaded with age old family traditions and hearty blessed goodness. My recipe for khichdi is subtle with spice with a creamy texture from the added ghee. My recipe uses salt but feel free to omit it or reduce the amount for your own taste requirements or if giving to children.
Khichdi can be made using different mung dal. Traditionally khichdi is made using dried, split mung beans with the husks on, also known as mung daal chilla with basmati rice. The skinned yellow mung dal can also be used instead if you prefer.
Gujarati Khichdi (Gujarati Rice and Lentils)
125g split mung beans (also known as mung daal chilla)
600ml hot water
¼ teaspoon organic turmeric (optional)
¼ teaspoon organic asafoetida
1 teaspoon salt
100g butter or ghee plus more for serving (omit for vegan version)
1 teaspoon freshly-ground black peppercorns
- First combine together the basmatic rice and split mung beans
- Throughly wash the combined khichdi mixture under cold water until the water runs clean.
- Place the mixture into a pan with the water and place on a low medium heat.
- Add the asafoetida and salt with the turmeric if using. Stir gently.
- Cook for 25 minutes or until all the water has been absorbed and the khichdi is tender and soft.
- Turn off the heat and allow to stand for 10 minutes.
- Next, add in the ghee or butter if using with the black pepper and beat the khichdi with a wooden spoon for a minute until it has a creamy texture with a porridge-like in consistency.
- Serve with more butter or ghee if using, chaas, ringna no ooro, papad or have it plain.