Simple Chana Dal and Dill Khichri

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Simple Chana Dal and Dill Khichri

I've made such good use over the years of recipes from Madhur Jaffrey's World Vegetarian Cookbook that I was delighted to finally obtain a copy of her older book, World-of-the-East Vegetarian Cooking. Both are filled with astonishingly fast and simple recipes for delicious and exotic dishes of all varieties.

My first opportunity to try something from the book came on a very busy day with little time for cooking, so I settled on a "khichri". Also known sometimes by its anglicized spellings "kidgeree" or "kitcheree", khichris are traditional Indian pots of rice and split beans cooked together with spices, herbs or vegetables for quick, simple and nourishing lunches or suppers. And this "khili hui khichri" with chana dal and fresh dill is about as quick and simple as they get, and also delightfully light, warm and sweet.

Chana dal, the split bean of a very small variety of chickpeas, has a delicately warm taste that is enhanced with the addition of other light flavors. I've adopted this recipe to increase the presence of the dal and reduce the rice. Chana dal is easily available at any Indian grocer, but if you can't find any, yellow split peas can be substituted.

Simple Chana Dal and Dill KhichriSimple Chana Dal and Dill Khichri
Recipe by
Adapted from Madhur Jaffrey's World-of-the-East Vegetarian Cooking
Cuisine: Indian
Published on November 13, 2007

Very simple, nourishing and delicious one-pot rice and pea "kitcheree" cooked with fresh dill — a wonderful lunch or light dinner

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  • 1/2 cup chana dal or yellow split peas
  • 1 1/3 cups basmati rice
  • 3 tablespoons ghee or a mixture of butter and olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 6 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • Rinse the chana dal or yellow split peas and soak overnight or for at least six hours in room temperature water. Before cooking, rinse the rice as well and drain the chana dal or split peas.

  • Heat the ghee or butter and oil over medium heat in a large saucepan. When hot, pour in the rice and chana dal or split peas and stir for 2 to 3 minutes, making sure that every grain and pea is coated with oil. Stir in the garam masala and dill, and continue to stir for another minute.

  • Add the vegetable stock, increase the heat to high, and bring to a boil. As soon as it comes to a boil, reduce the heat to very low, stir in the salt, and cover. Simmer for 25 minutes or until the water has been absorbed by the rice and peas.

  • Serve hot or warm with a clear, spicy soup and a vegetable dish or green salad.

Makes 6 servings

1 comment:

Wendy said...

Two of my fsvourite books! There's just so much in them.