Bajra or Pearl Millet is a very popular in Western India; especially in Maharashtra, Rajasthan, and Gujarat. Bajra is known for its heat generating properties and so is often eaten in winter. While I make Bajra Roti (Bhajra Bhakri) often, I made Bajrichi Khichdi | Bajra Khichdi for the first time this week.
I made a very simple, mildly spiced version of the Bajra Khichdi. It tasted just like Ven Pongal but because I used the Bajra as is without grinding the texture was a tad grainy and chewy (i liked this). I ate it with some Kadhi and Rasam, though you could enjoy it by itself or with some pickle on the side.
Millets are quite popular in many parts of India. This past year, I have been trying to incorporate more millets into my diet and so far have succeeded in cooking with Sama/Samai/Varai (Little Millet) and Kuthiraivalli/Odalu (Barnyard Millet).
How to Make Bajrichi Khichdi | Bajra Khichdi
- 3/4 Cup Bajra
- 1/2 Cup Moong Dal I used the split version with the skin/husk
- 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
- 3-4 Nos Green Chillies
- 1 tsp Grated Ginger
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric
- 1/4 tsp Asafoetida, Hing
- 1 tbsp Ghee
- Salt to Taste
- Wash and soak the Bajra in 2 cups water for at least 8 hours.
- Drain the water and set aside the soaked Bajra.
- If possible, soak the Moong Dal for 1 hour. This is an optional step. The Moong will cook even if you do not soak it but will need more time.
- Drain the water and set aside the Moong Dal.
- In a pressure cooker or kadai, heat the ghee.
- Add the cumin seeds and wait till they start to splutter.
- Add the hing, turmeric, and slit green chillies.
- Stir-fry for a few seconds.
- Add the soaked Bajra, Moong Dal, and salt.
- Mix well.
- Add 3 cups of water.
- Pressure cook for 3 whistles or cook covered on an open flame till the Bajra Khichdi is mushy.
- Using a heavy ladle, mix well so as to mash the moong dal a bit.
- Serve the Bajra Khichdi hot topped with sonme ghee and with some Kadhi, Dahi, Papad or Pickle on the side
- You could crush the soaked bajra or coarse grind it to get a smoother texture.
- Many people dehusk the soaked bajra but I did not.
- You can also make a Masala Bajra Khichdi by adding tomatoes, onions, and red chilli powder.