This version of Kitchari is a very simple dish. Simple it is indeed, but also perfect. It comes from the book My Bombay Kitchen by Niloufer King. I love kitchari and exploring kitchari recipes. The only spice in the tadka in this recipe is cumin, and the taste and crunch of the cumin against the rice and dal is amazing. I do hope you enjoy it.
Note that there are many English alternate spellings of Kitchadi — khichdi, kitchari, khichri, khichdee, khichadi, khichuri, khichari, kitcheree, kitchree, khichdi, and many other variants, and each Indian language has it’s own variation e.g. Hindi खिचड़ी khicṛī, Urdu: کھچڑی khicṛī, Oriya: ଖେଚେଡ଼ି khecheṛi, Bengali: খিচুড়ী khichuṛi, Gujarati: ખીચડી khichḍi. It is also known as Pongal in Sth India.
Take 1 cup each of rice and mung dal, and soak them together for 10 minutes or more. Then cook the rice and mung dal in about 8 cups water with salt to taste and 1 tsp powdered turmeric. Cook for about 45 minutes until they are very soft and mish-mash in texture.
Heat a little ghee (say 1 Tblspn, or more if you so desire), and add 1/2 tspn cumin seeds. Let it splutter and then add to the cooked dal and rice mixture. Mix, and cover for a couple of minutes to allow the flavours to absorb, adding water if it is too thick. Remember you can make it as thick or thin as you like – whatever works for you. This kitchari I like a little thick.
I like to use Soma Masori rice – a short grain rice that sticks together well. If you don’t have access to soma masori, use any short grained rice, or failing that, any rice will do.