Bhoger Khichuri or Bhog khichri is a traditional recipe, packed with flavours and a heavenly aroma that fills Bengali and Assamese houses around the time of Durga Puja and Saraswati Puja. Where in some houses Bhog Khichri is prepared with utmost love and dedication, with a personally curated recipe, it is something we look forward to having all year at the Puja pandals, along with Niramish labra (mix veg), paayokh (kheer), begun bhaja (eggplant fritters) and bilahi ombol (sweet and sour tomato chutney). This bhog khichri is my most favourite meal on the planet and sharing this recipe with you all is like sharing a piece of my culture, childhood and nostalgia.
It is not your ordinary khichri; it is a recipe that requires technique and patience. We do not use the pressure cooker to make this recipe. It takes time to cook but is absolutely worth every second. It tastes divine. We do not add onion and garlic to this khichri as it is a bhog recipe. However, following this recipe and using a handful of flavoursome spices, ingredients and condiments to curate this quintessential Bhog Khichri right in your kitchen.
This Bhoger Khichuri prepared by cooking rice and moong dal along with spices and vegetables is hearty, delicious, nourishing and nothing short of a perfect comfort meal.
Ingredients in this Bhog Khichri
There is a long list of ingredients that goes into making this divine recipe and it is worth every effort. However, let’s look at the key ingredients of this khichdi:
This Bhog Khichri calls for a special rice – gobingbhog rice/joha rice/aromatic broken basmati rice and cannot be made using any ordinary rice. It is a short grain, white, aromatic, sticky rice having a sweet buttery flavour.
- Moong Dal
Moong Dal or yellow lentil is one of the healthiest and flavourful dal that there is. Traditional Bhog Khichri is always prepared with moong dal. The dal and the rice are washed separately and are not mixed until the frying stage. The moong dal is also roasted and since it takes longer than the rice to cook, it is soaked separately for at least an hour.
- Garam Masala and Ghee
Garam masala plays a major role in flavouring this khichri as it lacks any pungent condiment such as onion or garlic. Adding whole garam masalas in the beginning to the tempering as well as topping with garam masala powder and ghee at the end ensures maximum flavour.
Vegetables add extra flavour and bite to this bhog khichri. As this is a slow cooked recipe, cutting vegetables slightly bigger is advisable to prevent them from getting mashed in the khichri.
Here’s the recipe:
Preparation time – 20 minutes
Cook time – 45 minutes
Serves – 6
- 1 cup yellow moong dal
- 1 cup gobingbhog rice/joha rice/aromatic broken basmati rice
- 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 3 tablespoons mustard oil
- 200g potatoes cut into big chunks
- 1 small cauliflower cut into florets
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- 2 cloves
- 2 cardamom
- 2 small tomatoes cut into cubes
- 4 slit green chilies
- 1 inch cinnamon
- 3 dried red chillies
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- ¼ cup grated coconut
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 4 – 5 cups of hot water (adjust if required later)
- ¼ cup peas
- 1 teaspoon ghee
- ½ teaspoon garam masala powder
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- Salt to taste
- Wash the rice thoroughly and set it on a strainer to dry.
- Heat a pan on medium flame, and dry roast the moong dal stirring occasionally (prevent from sticking to the base) for about 4-5 minutes.
- Wash it well and set it on a separate strainer to dry as well.
- Heat some oil in a pan and add the rice.
- Lightly fry the rice for a few minutes and set aside.
- In the same pan heat some more oil and fry the potatoes till their sides turn brown.
- In the same pan, fry the cauliflower florets till the top turns golden brown.
- Now, in a deep dish, heat the mustard oil.
- To the hot oil, add the whole spices – cumin seeds, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, dry red chilies, and bay leaves.
- Fry the whole spices for a few seconds then add the ginger paste.
- To the ginger paste add the cumin powder, sugar, turmeric powder and cook the spices for a few seconds.
- Add in the grated coconut and mix till well combined.
- Add ¼ cup of hot water to homogenise the spices and cook for a while.
- To this, add the fried uncooked rice and the roasted soaked dal.
- Give it a good mix and combine the rice and dal with all the spices.
- Add about 4.5 cups of hot water and mix thoroughly.
- Add in the tomato cubes, fried potatoes, green chilies, peas and fried cauliflower florets.
- Mix everything thoroughly.
- Cook on high flame, stirring occasionally till the rice and dal are about 20-30% done.
- Turn the heat down to low. Cover and cook for about 30 minutes.
- Take the lid off and add the garam masala powder and mix it in.
- Finish it off with salt to taste and ghee.
- Cook for a few more minutes, stirring till it reaches desired consistency.
Follow this full proof recipe to make a hearty batch of this comfort meal for yourself and indulge in some divine deliciousness. You’re going to love it.