Here’s a super simple and basic Khichdi recipe – something for those lazy days when you don’t really want to go all-out in the kitchen, but still want hug-in-a-bowl kinda comfort food in your belly.
Khichri / Khichdi for my family has always been something that’s made when someone is ill, has an upset stomach or for babies being weaned onto solid food. The reasoning is that Khichdi is easier to take in and digest since it has a very mild flavour, isn’t heavy on the spices and is very soft.
I remember my Mother cooking a small pot of Khichdi on the daily for my little brother seven years my junior when he was being weaned onto solids. This Khichdi was super soft, moist and buttery. Occasionally my Mother would add small chunks of potatoes that looked like they were melted into the rice, or chicken. I won’t lie, I would wait for my brother to (inevitably) have some leftovers for me to devour.
Come to think of it, I’ve no clue why I just didn’t ask my Mother to make some for me too. Kids, eh?
To this day, I love myself a bowl of Khichdi anytime I’m not in the mood for a full-blown taste-bud experience. Cooked in my style, with a slightly heavy hand on the black pepper and an emphasis on the delectable aroma of cinnamon, Khichdi makes for an ideal lunch on a lazy day.
Khichdi is also a fantastic meal for your little ones – my daughter particularly has been a complete Khichdi lover ever seen we were weaning her onto food. You can keep a light hand on the black pepper if your child is new to food or sensitive to spice. My girl has an impressively good tolerance to spice, so I use the same amount of black pepper as I would for myself.
You can use any type of lentils for Khichdi. I used masoor and moong daal, however black and green daal can also be used – green is used quite commonly. Additionally, the ratio of rice:lentils is also up to you. I used 50% rice and 50% daal however I’ve found some people prefer 30% daal and 70% rice – it’s purely your own choice and fear not, messing up the ratio will not mess up your Khichdi! Any changes you can make are listed in the ‘notes’ section below the recipe.
Khichdi is best deserved with a knob of butter and a dollop of yogurt. In fact, never have I seen a plate of Khichdi in my family without a side of yogurt. It seems quite unthinkable.
Top Khichdi Tips
- The more you brown your onions in the initial step, the darker your khichdi will be. Keep this in mind if you have a picture of how coloured you’d like the end result!
- For a great addition, try adding vegetables like cubed potatoes, peas, sweetcorn, carrots etc to this! For potatoes or carrots, I would recommend adding them around 20 minutes before the end. Sweetcorn and peas which are frozen are totally fine being added about 10 minutes before the end.
- Not a fan of the buttery dollop at the end? No worries. You can omit that and replace it with a lovely tadka of fried onions or anything else you fancy. Green chillis, cumin seeds, garlic and mustard seeds also make good additions.
Enjoy, with love x