Khichri, a dish consisting of rice and lentils, is the epitome of South Asian comfort meals. Just like any other comfort meal, Khichri can be prepared in a number of ways. Some people, like my Mummi, cook it with mung beans and to a mushy consistency, while some people, like my mother in-law, cook it with green mung beans and like a pilaf. Khichri can be eaten plain, with yogurt and mixed pickles on the side, or with any curry.
The recipe I’m sharing with you today is one that was taught to me by my mother in-law, Ammi. She is known in her circle of friends for her amazing cooking skills, and I have been very fortunate to have learned a number of things from her. This recipe is very basic, and can easily be customized to one’s preferences. Enjoy!
Yield: 2 – 3 Servings
- 1 cup basmati rice
- ½ cup split mung beans with husk/ green moong daal
- 3 tablespoons oil
- ½ onion, sliced thinly
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 2 small pieces cinnamon
- 6 cloves
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 black cardamoms
- 1 ½ tablespoons ginger-garlic paste
- Salt, to taste
- 2 ¼ cups boiling water
Combine rice and mung beans in a bowl and soak in cold water for at least 2 hours.
In a large vessel, warm oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and sauté until transparent. Add cumin, cinnamon, cloves, black pepper, and black cardamoms and cook for a few minutes. Add ginger-garlic paste and salt and cook until the oil begins to separate, 3 to 5 minutes. If the mixture is sticking to the pot, add a splash of water.
Drain rice mixture and add it to the simmering spices. Mix well and add boiling water. Once the water comes to a boil, reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer for 15 minutes without disturbing the rice.
Remove from heat and allow it to sit undisturbed for an additional 15 minutes. Stir and serve.