An Ode to Khichdi and How To Make It (the khichdi, not the ode)

Monday lunches are often Sunday leftovers. Not that I mind, especially if it happens to be Urad ki khichdi.

Monday lunches are often Sunday leftovers. Not that I mind, especially if it happens to be Urad ki khichdi.

While the world, at least a large part of it, thinks khichdi is a gooey mish mash of dal (often yellow), rice (often broken), and sometimes vegetables (ever tried the bong khichuri?) to the UP walas this firm yet soft mixture of urad dal and long grain basmati rice is what signifies khichdi.
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Made by boiling the most basic ingredients together, this khichdi seems simple to the eye. The trick however is to get the proportions right – of dal and rice, water and ghee, hing and ginger. In my almost 25 years of cooking life I have never been able to get it right. (No, I’m not that old, I started pretty early!)
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The mere mention of Urad khichdi transports me to my childhood in Kanpur. In a large home full of people. To a kitchen whose fire never went out. To a very, very happy place. But it remains my Waterloo — just like most of my Dadi’s recipes.
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So this Sunday, I got my Chachi to make it for me, and even though Urad dal doesn’t agree with my stomach I had three plates full. It would have been fatal to have it for dinner too so I packed the leftover for my Monday lunch. I fried it in a kadhai with some ghee and chilles and I was in Paradise again.

The Dadi would have not approved of the red chilli because you’re supposed to strictly use green chillies in this. But I think she’d forgive me. She always did.
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Oh yeah! If you want to try it, I got the recipe too.

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