Recipe : Spicy Masala Khichdi

This is the second time in my entire life I ate khichdi and the first time I cooked this dish ever. I am so happy with the outcome, that I really want to pat myself on the back. The first time was somewhere in 2012 when I was conducting an audit on a flight and one of the crew let me taste her khichdi. After that spoon, I decided never to even attempt such a dish. But a few weeks ago, a friend mentioned something about paalak{spinach} khichdi and I felt the urge to try making a khichdi at least once in my lifetime. So, I asked my mum and read few recipes and decided I won’t do the normal hospital-patient type of porridge styled khichdi. I’m neither a toddler nor an old person who needs mush. I decided to make it my own way. Basically, I made it non-mushy and flavourful with spices and Indian colours. I just finished eating 3 platefuls of this dish. Yes, that good, surprisingly. If you like the bland porridge type of khichdi, I’ve added some notes you can refer to below that will help you achieve just that.

Ingredients: {6-8 people}

  • 4 tbsp ghee
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 3 dried Kashmiri chilies
  • 2 cloves
  • 2 cardamoms
  • 2 big onions, finely chopped
  • 10-15 cloves of garlic, smashed
  • 1.5″ ginger, smashed
  • 1 green chili, chopped
  • 2 med tomato, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1.5 tsp garam masala powder
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/2 cup split moong dal, washed and soaked for at least 1 hour
  • 1 cup raw rice, cleaned and washed
  • water, almost double the quantity, so 3 cups almost
  • 1 cup vegetables of choice {eg. carrots, potatoes, peas}
  • salt and seasonings to taste


  • Boil or pan fry vegetables of your choice and keep aside.
  • Heat a pressure cooker and add the ghee followed by mustard seeds, cumin seeds, curry leaves, cloves, cardamoms.
  • Add the chopped onions, ginger, garlic, chilies and salt.
  • Once this is cooked, add the tomatoes and cook well.
  • Add the spice powders and sautΓ© for a few seconds.
  • Then add the lentils and rice and sautΓ© a few seconds more. {if using potatoes, add the cubed potatoes now}
  • Add the water and adjust the seasonings. Stir and mix very well.
  • Close the lid with the pressure(whistle) and cook for around 3 whistles or 4 minutes after pressure build up.
  • Once the pressure is released naturally, open the lid, add the cooked vegetables, mix well and serve hot.


  • If you want a mushier version, use 4.5 cups of water.
  • If you prefer the bland version or are making this for a patient or nursing someone to recovery, omit all the spices except turmeric.
  • If the person you are cooking for has difficulty chewing, add the vegetables with the rice in the cooker, like most recipes call for. They will becomes slightly mushy and not retain texture. But it will be very easy to digest.
  • You can use split moong/tuar/chana dal or a mixture also.
  • Contradictory to many recipes out there, you don’t need to use any fancy/expensive long grain rice. Save that for the biryanis and variety rice dishes where you cook it in ways where the grains stay separate. I used very average quality regular rice and the grains were still relatively nice and apart enough for a good khichdi.
  • You can drizzle some ghee before serving; it tastes better that way.
  • My khichdi is somewhat like sambhar-rice, but a bit drier. If you’re familiar with South Indian cuisine, you’ll know ‘sambhar and rice’ is different from ‘sambhar-rice’. Sambhar-rice is premixed and served at occasions and functions almost every single time. It’s spicy, has rice, dal, veggies and the tadka all in one pot.

Bon Appetit!

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            1. Aah, North Indian food is to die for! I definitely agree with the chili part…there’s garlic, ginger, whole spices…so many things to heat it up….not always chilis, but I must admit I am a devil with chilies. πŸ˜‰

              Liked by 1 person

  1. That’s two more times than me. The list of ingredients look interesting and the finished dish looks great. What is “moon dal”? That’s the only ingredient I don’t recognize.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Something is wrong with me since the past few days, Tim. I have no control. I have been eating three whole dinners. And I can’t stop!
      We consume a lot of lentils and pulses here. Moong is a type of lentil. It is inexpensive as compared to some other ones. I think you guys are familiar with mung bean sprouts that is used extensively in Asian cooking especially in stir fries and noodles. It’s the same thing, but unsprouted, husked, split and dehydrated. Moong has it’s origins in India.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You and Spunk. Ever since Spunk came back from his 3 weeks in the outer limits, he eats and eats. I’m afraid he has an alien that is going to pop out of him and eat us. The sprouts are familiar. We don’t eat lentils much out here. We eat pinto beans.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Oh dear, an alien….that explains a lot. It’s not my fault. It’s not me or my willpower that has been compromised…it’s the aliens πŸ˜‰
          Maybe give it a try sometime…very healthy. πŸ™‚

          Liked by 1 person

  2. As Usual Impressed With Your Stellar Memory
    Remembering When You First Ate a Dish in 2012

    (Glad You Only Ate the Food And Not the Dish)

    Hehe Like Me Remembering


    All Feelings

    Senses of That

    Day Of Whenever Whatever

    Movie Making Rue Memory too

    Always A Joy Sharing ‘Moving’ Pictures With You ‘Words’

    As Surely Fingers Are Legs And Keyboards Are Pianos

    SouL Dances Songs True How Nice of You To Fit in True Rue..:)

    Liked by 1 person

      1. SMiLes Rue Reason
        In Words Systemizing
        Order Out Of The
        Art Of
        Yes Then
        Art Relates
        SPiRiT Of HeART
        Free Dances Songs
        Of Soul In Flesh
        And Blood



        As Essence in
        Art Or Flesh
        Dance And

        Song Breathing
        Full Now Of Course
        Art Fits In Fiber Optic
        Cables Relating Essence
        Of Soul Uploading At

        The Speed
        oF LiGHT
        All Around
        A Globe

        A Change
        Indeed As It
        Wasn’t Too Many
        Centuries Ago only
        5 Percent Of The Population
        Were Even Literate Where

        The Written


        Rank Of β€˜God High’

        Still More Impressed
        By In The Flesh Poetry
        All Senses Feelings Engaged
        More Than Visual-Auditory

        Yet Some Give And Receive
        Energy Of DarK And LiGHT

        More to
        Feel Sense Real😊


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