Waking up to eat suhoor (pre-dawn meal) in the month of Ramadan at an unusual time of the night and sharing it with family members is both exciting and enjoyable.  Doctors warn against eating a heavy meal at that time. Thus, suhoor-time meal should be easily digestible, yet filling. Another important factor to keep in mind is that it should not require lengthy preparation. Generally, it is recommended to prepare the dish prior to sleeping and and re-heat it before serving. Khichri is one such dish.

Khichri is usually a vegetarian dish but this recipe has been customized to add meat, to make it wholesome and filling. Lentils, rice and vegetables add to the nutrition value of this dish. Moreover, it goes together quickly and can even be mostly assembled ahead of time. So now you can spend more time in personal ibaadah and less time in kitchen!

Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

1¼ cups basmati rice
2 tbsp ghee or vegetable oil
500 gms minced meat (your choice of chicken, beef or lamb)
1 tsp ginger paste
2 tsps garlic paste
1 large onion, finely chopped
1¼ cups red split lentils (masoor dal), rinsed
2 tsp garam masala (curry powder)
1½ tsp salt, or to taste
pinch of ground asafetida
4 cups water
2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

Method:

  1. Rinse the basmati rice in several changes of water until the water runs clear, then let soak for 30 minutes. Drain and set aside until ready to cook.
  2. Melt the ghee/vegetable oil in a flame-proof casserole or large pan with a tight-fitting lid over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic paste and ginger paste and sauté for 5-8 minutes, stirring frequently, until golden (not browned).
  3. Stir in the rice, minced meat (your choice of chicken, beef or lamb) and lentils along with the garam masala, salt, and asafetida, and stir for 2 minutes. Pour in the water and bring to a boil while stirring continuously.
  4. Reduce the heat to as low as possible and cover the pan tightly. Simmer without lifting the lid for 20 minutes, until the grains are tender and the liquid is absorbed. Re-cover the pan, turn off the heat, and let stand for 5 minutes.
  5. Use 2 forks to mix in the cilantro and adjust the seasoning, adding more salt if necessary.

Serve with chapatti (Indian bread) and raita (yogurt).

Re-heating this dish is easy! Re-heat on low-medium heat and add water if necessary to maintain the porridge like consistency.

Bon appetite!

Question: I'd love to know what you do differently if you make this dish often. And what have you been eating for your suhoor meals? Post your replies below!

About The Author

Kanika is an engineer by profession, currently pursuing a Bachelors in Islamic Sciences from Arees Institute (studying under Shaykh Isam Rajab, hafidahullah) and conducts online seminars for sisters at http://habibihalaqas.org . She is also a professional makeup artist and looks forward to increasing Muslim sisters' self esteem through her new venture: http://beautyglamsham.com . She also has a diploma in Indian Cooking and offers classes in Indian Cuisine in Chicago and Toronto - http://learnindiancooking.com . She is happily married and currently resides in Chicago with her lovely husband.

13 Responses

  1. Yasmin Raoufi

    Well, I’m lazy so I just have a bowl of Honey Bunch of Oats cereal. But your recipe sounds really delicious so maybe I’ll have my mom make me some because she’s the cook in our house :)

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  2. Sadaf Farooqi

    We just have (any kind of) eggs with slices of bran bread and a small piece of meat (chicken frankfurter or kebab). Milk, tea follow.
    Do some people have khichri with chapati?
    Its a great idea to post your Ramadan recipes, Kanika. Barak Allahu feek.

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    • Bint Ahmed

      Haha I was thinking the same thing too (about eating khichri with chapati).

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      • Kanika Aggarwal

        trust me, I have gotten this question from others besides both of you and now it made me question if it was a weird practice that runs just in my family lol. if the consistency of khichri is porridge/kheer like (meaning if you leave some liquid in it) then yes, it can be eaten with chapati and will be more filling, especially for suhoor time.

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  3. Bint Ahmed

    Assalamu Alaikum,

    I would use a pressure cooker, and cook it that way (only because I would use any excuse to shorten the cooking time in this heat). Though you have to be careful to add enough liquid, so that it doesn’t form a burnt layer at the bottom. Also, maybe I’m just weird, but instead of adding salt, I would add a chicken stock cube for more flavor. Plus, cumin seeds in the beginning when sauteeing the onion. :)

    I’ve always made plain khichri, so this is a good excuse to change up the routine a bit! Can’t wait to try it. Good idea! JazakiAllah khayr sis!

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  4. Nadia

    I like the idea of posting recipes, this one sounds like something I have to try. Thanks for sharing.

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    • Kanika Aggarwal

      thanks for the feedback Nadia! inshaAllah in the future we will be posting more of our culinary adventures and recipes so please check back :) jazzak Allah khair

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