As the name implicates, Bhoger Khichuri refers to the khichudi offered to god. There is a slight difference in preparation between Bhoger Khichuri and conventional khichuri. Bhoger Khichuri is made fully 'niramish' (vegetarian) with no hint of onion and garlic, two basic ingredients commonly associated with non-veg preparations. Taste wise, bhoger khichuri is lip-smacking, people literally falling over each other to get their share of the bhog when the same is distributed in pandals during Durga Puja, mainly on Ashtami. Bhoger Khichuri acquires a distinctive savory flavor when offered to the deity, the fragrance of incense, flowers and the blessing of the almighty all contributing to enrich the taste. Of all the goodness of Pujo, this one I find the most tempting - Khichuri.
Just as we spent the pujo this year away from all the cacophony and clamor connected to the festivity, my hubby came to me with a request to grace our Saturday lunch with bhoger khichuri and Elish Mach bhaja. Like a good wife always at my hubby's service, I naturally complied with his wish serving him a fulfilling meal yesterday.
Ingredients: Cooking time: 1 hr approx.
ü 2 cups of gobindobhog rice
ü 2 1/4 cup of moong lentil
ü 1 small cauliflower (cut into florets of medium size)
ü 1 large or 2 medium size potatoes (cut into medium size cubes)
ü 1 cup green peas (frozen)
ü 1/2 cup chopped coconuts (optional)
ü 1 tbsp ginger paste
ü 2 tomatoes (chopped)
ü 2 1/2 tsp cumin powder
ü 1 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
ü 4-5 green chillies (slit)
ü Salt to taste
ü 3 tsp sugar
ü 1 tsp garam masala powder
ü White oil for cooking
ü 1 tsp cumin seeds
ü 1 bay leaf
ü 2 dry red chillies
1) Wash rice and dal separately under running water. Keep aside.
2) Heat oil in a wok. Shallow fry cauliflower and potatoes till they turn golden brown in color. Keep aside.
3) Into the same oil, add the ingredients for sauté and allow them to sputter.
4) Add tomatoes, green chillies, ginger paste, turmeric powder and cumin powder. Sauté the mixture for couple of minutes till oil floats on the surface.
5) Add green peas and chopped coconuts. Stir around. Add rice, lentil, salt and sugar. Measure out water to cover the mixture. Dung the shallow fried vegetables into the wok. Cook covered, checking and stirring occasionally, till rice is cooked through. (Khichuri absorbs a lot of water, so when the mixture turns dry, refill it with water.)
6) Finally, stir in garam masala powder and dribble ghee to melt into the khichudi bringing out an awesome flavour.
7) Serve hot with Begun Bhaja or Elish bhaja.
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