Kichen Tales: Making Kichadi

The ubiquitous Kichdi is a well-known dish among various communities, generally considered to be a comfort food. What is lesser known, or rather, hardly known is the sweet kichdi (Konkani - kichadi) - a yummy dessert cooked by the Saraswats on special occasions. It forms a part of offering made to God on auspicious days, along with urad dosa.

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I made Kichdi on the occasion of Lakshmi Pooja as naivedyam to the Goddess. Well, the real reason was because it's my most favorite dessert, and I couldn't think of anything better than kichadi to offer Ma Lakshmi.

So thus goes the recipe:

What you need:
Chana dal (bengal gram dal) - 1/2 cup
Dahlia (Broken wheat; gova kani) - 1/2 cup
Jaggery bits - almost 1 cup
Tender coconut scrapings - 1/2 cup
Ghee - about 7 to 8 spoonfuls
Cardamom (elaichi) - 15 no's, powdered
Raisins & cashew nuts - as much as you like

*Wash and dry the chana dal and dahlia. Roast both of these in ghee and set aside to cool.
*Roast the raisins and cashew nuts in ghee, set aside.

In a pressure cooker, cook both the above with sufficient water (1 whistle on high, followed by 15 minutes on 'sim' mode). Once the steam is completely released, check on the consistency. Take care to see that the chana dal is not too mashed.

Adjust the consistency with water and heat on a mid-low flame. Once it comes to a boil, add the jaggery scrapings and continue cooking, till the jaggery completely dissolves. It is better to use the coloured variety of jaggery, as the kichadi will turn out into a golden-brown colour. Next, add the coconut gratings and continue to cook on a low flame. You have to heat for a minimum of 6-7 minutes after adding coconut. Next add the roasted raisins and cashew nuts, followed by the cardamom powder. Heat for a while, turn off the heat, and keep covered for about an hour, so that the kichadi sets well.

And yeah, in between each of these ingredients, add a spoonful of ghee and mix well. I don't add too much usually, but then I guess, when it's Deepavali it's ok to indulge a bit!

The consistency while turning off the heat should be more on the watery side, as it'll thicken a bit when you let it set. You can adjust this into a thickened version, or a more watery version. Also, the above measurement makes it moderately sweet - adjust the jaggery as per your sweet tooth; if not available, can be replaced with sugar.

Serving tip: I love it best, when served steaming hot, with a dollop of ghee on top! 

Naivedyam on Deepavali (Lakshmi Pooja)


  1. So many different types of food. Who knew Khichdi can be sweet? Who knew Khichdi can be made by chana dal? Thank you for sharing a beautiful recipe.


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