Khichdi – I remember my mum cooking Khichdi when I was a young child.
The combination and aromas of basmati rice, split moong dhal and ghee just brings fond memories of my childhood. This dish often cooked when someone at home is unwell, the mix of herbs and spices such as turmeric, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, black peppercorns and coriander are believed to enhance the medicinal values of this simple dish.
For me, the Khichdi was not just comfort food which was easily prepared and served in a bowl or a plate, but it was a way my Mother showcased her love in order to heal us when we fell ill. Inspite the conventional medicines prescribed by the doctor, my Mother believed that her cooking has greater healing properties because it was cooked with thoughts and love.
Thank you, Ma. As I haven’t been feeling well in recent times, your cooking brings me comfort thoughts and I believe I’m healing.
For the first time, I cooked Khichdi or Kedgeree as it’s famously known in England with the nations favourite fish, Cod! I made it my own recipe and the outcome was absolutely fantastic! This recipe will be my go to comfort, one pot, one bowl meal that is easily enjoyed at all seasons!
1 cup Brown Basmati Rice – washed and presoaked for 2 hours, drained
1/2 cup Split Moong Dhal – washed and presoaked for 2 hours, drained
1 cup of Cabbage – shredded
1 cup of Carrots – shredded
2 fillets of Cod ( or any fish of your choice ) – seasoned with salt and turmeric powder.
1 large Tomato – chopped
2 tablespoons of Ghee or Clarified butter
Hot water ( enough to cover the rice and lentils to cook )
Salt to taste
1 teaspoon Cumin Seeds
1 teaspoon Fennel Seeds
1 teaspoon Turmeric powder
1 teaspoon Coriander powder
1/2 teaspoon Hing / Asafoetida
Thumb size Ginger – chopped
2 Cloves of Garlic – chopped
2 dried Red Chillies – chopped
1 medium-sized Red Onion – chopped
Greek Yogurt or Pickle
Melt the ghee in medium heat in a non – stick saute pan. Fry the cumin and fennel seeds till it begins to splutter.
Add the chopped onions, ginger, garlic, chillies to this and fry till the onions softens.
Then add the rice and moong dhal to this mixture.
Now add the turmeric powder, coriander powder, hing and stir until well incorporated. You want to fry this for a further 2 minutes in medium heat just to allow the spices and flavours to work its’ magic.
Add the shredded cabbage and carrots and mix in.
Now you pour enough water, just to cover the top of the rice and lentils. This has to cook in medium heat with the lid on for 20 minutes. You can half season it with salt and add more later if needed. But allow it to cook and just keep an eye that it needs water to cook.
20 minutes later, remove the lid and add the fillets of cod and chopped tomatoes. You want to cover it, give it a gentle burial into the rice. Cook it further for 15 minutes.
Taste for salt before you turn off the heat.
And your Cod Kedgeree is ready to be served with any salad of your choice. I enjoyed mine with hardboiled eggs, yogurt and red chillies!