Khichdi has always been a comfort food in Indian homes. Traditionally, it is a combination of lentils and rice that is lightly flavored with ghee, cumin seeds, turmeric and salt. Now, how about trying a masala version of this khichdi? This one is tastier and healthier! Just the addition of some vegetables and a few more everyday aromatic spices makes it masaledar. You can just make it with onions and spices, but if you, like me, love your vegetables, feel free to add the vegetables of your choice. This masala khichdi is definitely a soul food when it comes to those busy tiring days, as it is super easy to make and is ready in no time.
½ cup (100 g) uncooked white rice
½ cup (100 g) split and skinned green gram lentils
2 tbsp (30 g) ghee

2 whole cloves
1 (2” [5-cm]) piece cinnamon stick
4 black peppercorns
1 tsp cumin seeds
½ cup (80 g) thinly sliced onion
2 green chiles, slit in half
2 tsp (5 g) ginger-garlic paste
½ cup (75 g) peeled and cubed potato
½ cup (73 g) green peas
½ cup (64 g) cubed carrot
1 tsp ground coriander
½ tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp Kashmiri red chile powder
1 to 1½ tsp (6 to 9 g) salt
1 tbsp (15 ml) fresh lime juice
2 tbsp (4 g) chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish
Plain yogurt
Roasted papad
Green chutney
In a medium-sized bowl, combine the rice and lentils. Wash them two or three times with water until the water runs clear. Then, soak the washed rice and lentils in 3 cups (720 ml) of water for 20 minutes. Soaking them will make sure they cook evenly and quickly.
Heat the ghee in a pressure cooker over medium-high heat. Once the ghee is hot, add the cloves, cinnamon stick, peppercorns and cumin seeds and let them crackle, stirring constantly to be sure they don’t burn, for a few seconds.
Add the onion and green chiles to the pressure cooker, lower the heat to medium and cook, stirring, until the onion becomes slightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Next, add the ginger-garlic paste and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the potato, green peas and carrot and cook for a minute. Now, add the coriander, turmeric and Kashmiri red chile powder and cook, stirring, for a minute.
Drain the water from the rice and lentils and add them to the pressure cooker along with the salt, 4 cups (960 ml) of water and lime juice. Close the lid of the cooker and pressure cook over high heat until one whistle sounds. Now, lower the heat and cook for 10 more minutes.
Once done, remove the cooker from the heat and let the pressure release naturally. Once all the pressure has released, open the lid and mix the khichdi with a large spoon. If it is too thick, add some boiling hot water and adjust its consistency. The consistency of khichdi should be like that of porridge. Garnish the masala khichdi with fresh cilantro and serve hot with plain yogurt, roasted papad and green chutney.
Alternatively, to make this recipe in an Instant Pot, use the sauté setting before closing the lid. Then, reducing the water measurement to 3 cups (720 ml), pressure cook on high pressure for 12 minutes, followed by natural pressure release.

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