Food For The Soul OR An Upset Stomach:) – Dal Khichdi



In North India khichdi refers to a plain grainy concoction of rice and moong / masur / tuvar dal cooked soft with salt and seasoned with curry leaves, dry red chillies, hing (asfoetida) and jeera. The Southern counterpart is the thick ‘pongal’ which is again rice and moong cooked soft but seasoned with roasted black pepper and jeera powder. Both, in their rustic forms are bland and considered ideal food when one has a bout of dysentry. Pongal or khichdi is also one of the early foods introduced to infants. It is good for the sick or aged as it easily digested. These days as with everything else, the basic khichdi has undergone a sea change and in restaurants what is served in the name of khichdi is spicy tuvar and rice combo with dollops of ghee and heavy seasoning. I like to have a dash of pickle as an accompaniment as it has a sharp and tangy taste that complements the bland khichdi. The best way to serve it is summarised as “khichdi ke chaar yaar – dahi, papad, ghee, achaar.”

Recipe : Dal Khichdi | A lentil and rice preparation from North India

Rice – 1 cup
Masur dal (Red gram dal) – Approx 1/4 cup
Tuvar dal (Split pigeon peas) – A fistful

Onion – 1 medium (Sliced thin)
Curry leaves, ginger (Optional)
Garlic – 2 pods (Crushed slightly)
Bay leaf – 1/2(If big)
Cinnamon – 1″ stick
Star Anise – 1 (Optional)
Jeera – 1 tsp.
Two cashews for topping
Mustard oil – 1 to 2 tbsp.
Salt to taste


Mix the dals together. Cook rice and dals separately till very soft.

Heat mustard oil to smoking hot. Let cool completely. Heat again and splutter jeera. Add garlic, cashew, cinnamon, bay leaf and onions in order.

Fry till the onions turn brown.

Add the cooked rice and dal with enough water to rissotto like consistency or even more flowy if you would like. Adjust salt.

Mix well, keeping a grainy consistency, and serve hot.

The USP of this dish is the mustard oil.


Harini is a vegan food photographer, writer and recipe developer. She also loves feeding birds, reading, watching crime thrillers, and travelling amongst other things.

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  • Jenni Malsingh

    Looks divine, and real comfort food too! Here's some pictures of some khichari I made recently – it's still soft but slightly less mushy:

  • Srivalli

    thats a real comfort food..thanks for the entry!

  • Vaishali

    I could pick up that incredible bowl of khichdi right now and eat it all up! How delicious and comforting does that look, Sunshinemom?

  • Gita's Kitchen

    Please check my blog, I have something for you 🙂

  • Uma

    kichdi looks fabulous Harini!

    Please visit my place for a treat:

  • Archy

    Hey, I love khichidi.. Shall try this simple and easy one!! Nice entry !!

    Hey thanks for ur sweet words in my blog 🙂 !!

  • PG

    yum yum yum! I haven’t had khichdi in ages. and this one comfort food for me. lovely pictures!
    BTW, ther is something for you at my blog. Please come and pick it up! (so that you don’t get confused, I’ll be emailing you the details of my entry to your event soon )

  • sowmya

    comfort it anytime..

  • Sunshinemom

    Thank you all!

    Priya, Lakshmi, Vidhas – Thank you so much for the buddy tag:)

  • Red Chillies

    We love kichidi too, filling yet nutritive and easy for us to cook. Your kichidi looks lovely!

  • Navita

    Glad u liked it Harini.

  • Uj

    This is ultimate comfort food;. It is easy to make ans is light on tummy too.. Your’s looks really yummy have to try it 🙂

  • vidhas

    Kichindi in a new flavour. Looks yummy and lovely photographs. Something is waiting for you in my blog.

  • Lakshmi Venkatesh

    Kichdi is looking tempting. Dear Harini, you have something waiting for you in my blog.

  • Priya

    Temptinh khichidi..makes me hungry..have a look at my blog, something waiting for u..

  • Mahimaa's kitchen

    I made ur kichdi today and loved it to the core.. this will be a regular in our house from now on!! thank u some much dear..

  • Gita's Kitchen

    The khichdi looks so delicious. Easy to make with a few spices, love your version 🙂

  • Happy cook

    Beautiful picture. Just the picture shows how comforting it is.

  • Soma

    Love "Khichuri" :-DD a bong myself. Believe it or not it is one of our fav. food at home. with some papad & achaar..

    Loved that garlic!!

  • Sunshinemom

    Srilekha – Thanks! I think I will have some entries too this time:)

    Priyanka – Welcome back!! So good to see you:)

    Simran – Yup!

  • Simran

    Ultimate soul food

  • notyet100

    this is really comfort food, u dng,..?liked the new look of ur blog,…i have so much to catch up,..everywhere…will catch uo with ur pother posts soon,…ceeya…hppy bloggin…

  • Sunshinemom

    Thanks all!

    Sweatha – I too like Bengali khichuri. Blogged it too:)

    Sharmila – In Pune too! I thought it was restricted to Mumbai Suburbs! For us the load shedding last five hours a day!! I love toasted or fried garlic!

  • Kitchen Flavours

    Adding toor dal is something new to me. With all those spices, wow, sounds spicy and looks yummy.

  • Jayashree

    Beautiful pics.

  • Sharmila

    The power cuts here too is driving everybody crazy … all the appliances lying idle .. a jungle is a good choice to live in right now .. at least we would get pure oxygen. 🙁
    Your khuchdi looks delicious as usual … I usually dunk in everything into the cooker … will try tempering it like you next time .. the fried garlic looks so crispy.

  • Cham

    Few ingredients (masala) adding gave a different name in North … Ur kichdi is little watery and feel just scooping from the screen 🙂

  • jayasree

    Your writing is tempting enough to try this kichadi soon. You have presented the humble kichadi as an exotic dish. Great click too.

  • Bharti

    Comfort food at its best. Yum.

  • Divya Vikram

    Ultimate comfort food!

  • Curry Leaf

    Delicious.I had once made bengali one and it was fine with me.I will try this also.Actually I am not a dal person,but the bengali one changed me.

  • Usha

    I agree with you I like my khichdi with few and subtle spices rather than the heavily spiced version…yours looks yum..

  • Mahimaa's kitchen

    You have made a simple kichdi look terrific. i have made only pongal and not this kind of kichdi. after seeing ur pic, i can’t help but bookmark this recipe. so healthy and yummy.. isn’t it?

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