If you follow me on Instagram, you know I post a ton of khichdi photos – it’s a staple in my house. Khichdi which means mixture, is a combo of lentils & rice seasoned with mild spices. The spices are warming, detoxifying, and anti-inflammatory. Khichdi makes an excellent source of protein for plant eaters, is nourishing & easy to digest. Khichdi is traditionally used in Ayurvedic cooking & is a staple in Indian households. Oftentimes it’s served as one of baby’s first meals, used in an Ayurvedic cleanse, or when you are feeling unwell.
The following is my favorite recipe – it’s so creamy & comforting. You can add any grilled, oven-roasted, or sautéed vegetables that are in season to it, or cook them in the khichdi itself. I prefer to use a short grain rice like sonamasuri – but basmati rice works too.
1/2 cup moong dal (split mung beans without skin) – rinsed & soaked for 2 hours or overnight
1/2 cup Sonamasuri or basmati rice
4 cups water
2 teaspoons pink salt
2 teaspoons fresh ginger – grated with a microplane
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
A few grinds of fresh black pepper
1.Place all the ingredients above into a pot (roughly 6 qt – not a large pasta size pot) over medium heat, stir.
2. Bring to a simmer over medium heat (roughly 10 min).
3. Reduce heat to low
4. Cover pot leaving a gap for steam to escape.
5. Cook roughly 40 min, until lentils are soft. Stir. Remove from heat.
After the lentil/rice mixture is cooked we are ready to finish off the dish.
For the tadka (tempering)
2 tablespoons vegan butter, ghee, or coconut oil
2 fresh curry leaves
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds
⅛ teaspoon Hing/asafoetida
1.Add ghee or oil to a small fry pan over medium heat.
2. Add curry leaves.
3. Add cumin & mustard seeds, stir. When cumin & mustard seeds start to pop and release their fragrance, carefully add Hing & stir.
4. Pour ghee/spice mixture carefully over cooked lentil/rice mixture stir.
5. Serve & enjoy!
Make it next level…add any of the following.
Add 1/2 cup roughly chopped cilantro to the cooked khichdi.
Add 1 cup chopped fresh greens – baby kale, baby chard, baby spinach (I typically add greens 5 to 7 minutes before the khichdi is finished cooking).
Add 1 cup of any cooked veggies in season.