Gudjerati Khichhari
A quick and wonderfully easy recipe that tastes authentically  Indian.


¾ cup red lentils or mung dal
3 tablespoons oil
½ cup basmati white rice
4 cloves
5 inches (5 cm) cinnamon stick, broken
4 cardamoms
1 teaspoon salt½ teaspoon turmeric
1 onion, sliced
1 tablespoon black mustard seeds
10 almonds, blanched
10 cashew nuts
1 tablespoon raisins
½ teaspoon nutmeg, grated
½ teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon coriander powder



1. Sort, wash and drain the dal and leave to soak in a pan of cold water for at least an hour.

2. Put 3¼ cups water on to boil. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pan.

3. Wash the rice and dal. Add them to the oil and fry over a low heat with the cloves, cinnamon, cardamom, salt and turmeric, stirring all the time.

4. When the water comes to a boil, turn off the heat and add it to the rice and dal. Cover the pan with a lid and place in an oven mark 3 (160°C, 325°F) for 14-16 minutes.

5. Meanwhile, heat the remaining two tablespoons of oil in a small frying pan and lightly fry the onion and mustard seed. Add nuts, raisins, nutmeg, pepper, cumin seeds, and coriander.

6. Fry until the nuts are browned, then stir the mixture into the cooked rice and dal. Serve hot with a curry.

Khichari is the original of the English ‘Kedgeree’. It was popular with the Mughal rulers of India, and this Gudjerati Khichhari was eaten by natives of Bengal on festive occasions. The dish should not be mushy – remove from the oven when the grains are moist and all the water has been absorbed.


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