Moudardara ( The Lebanese version of Khichdi )

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Preparation Time - 40-45 mins
Author: Sweta Biswal, Blogger @Oriya Rasoi
Ingredients -
  • 1 1/2 cup basmati rice
  • 1 1/2 cup mixed lentils ( I used kidney beans, red lentils and horsegram )
  • 2 medium sized onions (sliced finely)
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp peppercorn
  • 1/2 tsp all spice powder
  • 2 tbsp + 2 tsp EVOO
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 pinch saffron
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Preparation 
  • Wash and soak the lentils overnight.
  • Crush the cumin and peppercorn into a coarse mix. Soak the saffron in the warm milk.
  • Cooking - Cook the lentils in a pressure cooker for 2 whistles. They should be just cooked and firm to touch. Drain the excess water but do not throw it away.
  • Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan. Add the onions and fry on low heat till they turn brown. Remove half of these onions from wok and keep aside.
  • Add the washed rice, cooked lentils, crushed spices, all spice and salt to the same wok. Mix together and cook for 2-3 mins till the rice grains are well coated with oil.
  • Add the drained water from the lentils and some more such that it just stands a few millimeters above the rice.
  • Bring to a boil and then let it simmer while covered till rice is almost done. Stir gently once or twice during the cooking.
  • Add the saffron along with the milk. Cook till the excess moisture disappears.
  • Mix in the remaining caramelized onions.
  • Serve with plain yogurt or a raita.

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