Khitcheri Mung Dal (Green Gram)-North Indian
Moong Dal Khichri
This dish is a nutritious and complete meal in itself, it is easy to make, and easy to digest, even for small children. I often add a few vegetables to it, just to give it interest. When made from Skinless mung dal and rice, it is often given to people recovering from gastrointestinal upsets and other illnesses. In this case, cook it soft, as in the last picture.
250 gm. rice
150 gm. mung/moong dal with skin (split green gram lentil) with skin.
A cup of prepared vegetables: peas, carrots, courgettes, chopped potatoes, tomatoes, cauliflower, green beans or whatever other vegetables you have.
1-2 tbsp. ghee or oil
1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
A pinch of asafoetida, (hing) optional. It is good for digestion.
Salt to taste
1/2 tsp. turmeric powder (optional)
Other optional ingredients:
Chilli powder or 1 chopped green chilli.
1 onion, peeled, sliced and deep fried.
Clean, wash and drain dal and rice together.
If vegetables are used prepare, wash and drain.
Heat oil in a pressure cooker or a pan with a tight lid.
Add cumin seeds and asafoetida and wait until seeds sputter, not letting them burn.
Add onions, if used, and fry until golden brown.
Add rice and dal mix and stir fry for a couple of minutes. This will coat the rice and dal grains with oil.
Add rest of the vegetables, salt and turmeric and give it a quick stir.
Add enough boiling water to cover the rice, and 1/2 inch above it (1 inch, if not using pressure cooker).
Bring to a brisk boil, pressure cook for 2-3 whistles or pressures. If cooking in a pan, cover and simmer gently on a low fire, until almost all water is absorbed and rice and dal are tender.
Serve to children with natural yoghurt and adults with papodoms, Mango Pickle or any other pickle of your choice, Mango Chutney and natural yoghurt. A tsp. of ghee on top of the khitchri before eating gives it an authentic flavour.
You can use urad/urid/urd dal (split black gram dal) or dhuli masoor dal (red lentil) instead of moong dal.
Kedgeree, a Scottish/English dish, is often claimed to have originated from Khitchri. It is said that kedegree is a modification or bastardisation of the word Khitcheri (spellings may vary on the web), though I am not so sure. Khitchri in Hindi means a mis-mash or a mix of. The dish is basically made of rice and split moong dal or split urad dal, with a tarka of cumin and ghee, salt and turmeric. It is eaten with fresh natural yoghurt, butter, dry-roasted popodums and a selection of pickles. Sometimes, vegetables are added during cooking.