Friday, January 09, 2009

Paneer Khichuri


Well it has been almost ten days into the New Year and I have no plans or Resolutions. I have stopped making plans, because it seems my life has a definite mind of its own and leads its own oblivious of the plan I have laid out for it. There are lucky people who make plans and their life stick to it, but alas my life is a free spirit. So I have decided to gather all my faith from every crevice of my being and just put the burden on the All Mighty, let him/her lead me through the path that has been already set out for me.

But however much I don’t plan at the macro level, when it comes to the micro level as in “what to eat for lunch, dinner etc. etc. this week” I need to have some kind of a plan thing in place. More of a TBD I would say, than a plan. This has been the first week after the parents left, after both me & D got back to work, after Big Sis S went back to school and the Nanny is at home taking care of Baby A. I was pretty tense about this week as you might well imagine. Other than major guilt pangs of “Ohhh, I am leaving the little baby girl in mercy of a ruthless nanny, I am a bad bad Mom” there was also the fact that I needed to cook ahead to tide us through most of the week.

So I made a plan, ahem…but a “micro” plan.

This was what I cooked last weekend for this week:

1. Masoor Dal with Brussel Sprouts -- almost the same way I did this except here I used chopped brusel sprouts
2. Baingan Bharta
3. A Mixed Veggie Dish that had carrots, celery, broccoli, brussel sprouts and potatoes – pretty scary all that veggies with the “healthy” label
4. A Thai Veggie Soup – this was delicious and am going to post sometime
5. A simple paneer dish for Big Sis S alone who following on her dad’s credentials refuses to eat fish since the last few months, and following her own pretty much everything else. Kids turn weird as they grow older until they become Moms like me.
6. Fish Curry for Monday

I would make a quick Non-Veg something on Wednesday to survive Wed & Thur I thought.

Come Tuesday evening and I knew my plan was failing. There was very little of what I cooked left. Between us 3 adults (me, D and the Nanny) we had managed to finish major portion of what I had cooked. This weekend I am thinking up better plans, only on the “micro” level of being though !!!

While I was cooking last weekend for the week, I couldn’t possibly let anyone in the family eat that food over the weekend and make my life more miserable. Eating out on cold weekends with the baby is difficult and takeouts is not an option for every meal on weekends. I wanted to make something quick, simple, one pot and I came across Paneer Khichuri in my growing collection of that Bong Mag Sananda.

We liked it served with my Ma's delicious Tamarind Achaar/Chutney, I of course because it was simple and made my life easy, D because he didn’t want to ruffle my already ruffled feathers. Big Sis S proclaimed she didn’t like it that much. She is in a stage or phase where she likes home cooked food only if the home is NOT her own.
But really it was pretty decent if you like Khichuri or Khichdi

This quick Medley of rice and lentils aka Khichuri takes on a new dimension with the Paneer and Raisins.It made the mundane Khchuri special and we liked it, try it out for a quick simple meal

Paneer Khichuri

How I Did It

Prep: Lightly fry till golden about 1/2 cup of Paneer cut in small cubes. If your paneer tends to get tough on frying dunk the lightly fried pieces in salted warm water.
Wash 1 cup of Rice and 1/3cup Yellow Moong Dal (Yellow Lentils), 1/3 cup Red Masoor Dal (Red lentils), 1/3 cup of whole Black Urad (or any other dal of your choice) . To learn more about Lentils or Dals go here.

Strat Cook:

Heat Oil in a Frying Pan.

Temper with 2 Bay Leaves/TejPata, 1/2" of Cinnamon stick and 1 tsp of Cumin Seeds/Jeera.

Add 1/4 cup of finely chopped onions (not in original recipe). Saute till the onions are soft and translucent.

Add 1/4 cup of finely chopped tomatoes(not in original recipe and can be skipped) and fry till the tomatoes are well done.

Add 1 cup of rice, and the Dals, 1/3 cup each.

Add salt, little sugar, 3-4 chopped green chillies, 2 tsp of fresh ginger paste and saute the rice and dal. Add water in proportion, I added about 4-5 cups of water. Depending on how you like your khchuri to be in respect to the consistency adjust water.

Mix well and let cook. When the rice and dal are cooked, add raisins and the paneer cubes. Stir and cook for couple more minutes.

Add 1 tsp of Ghee if you wish

Sprinkle Garam masala and grated paneer and serve.

Tips: Substitute paneer with Tofu for a healthier version. Instead of grated paneer you can add scrambled eggs before serving


  1. When i make some plans for food it never turn to be going the way i planned.
    Kitchuri looks yummm.

  2. I never make resolutions...somehow, they always come to nothing.

    The khichudi looks lovely S :-)

  3. Great to have you back blogging, Sandeepa, enjoyed reading the post.

  4. I NEVER made resolutions either before blogging, can you believe it? Last year, I started restricting myself not to do this and that and it worked somehow. More restrictions this year, hope it works too!:)

    Khichudi looks yum, Paneer adds some calcium. Perfect for kiddies too.

    Glad you have a nanny to help, wish I had one when my kids were young, had "baby blues" for a while after Trisha was born and we were so alone in UK with Arvind busy doing residency and with just stipend as income.

    Have a great weekend with the family! :))

  5. Paneer Khichuri, well who can say no to that. Well of course 'S' is exempt.
    Sandeepa can't you get the nanny to cook a little bit?

  6. Thanks HC, Sunita, Sra

    Asha, the nanny was a necessity since I went back to work and didn't want to take the baby out in the bitter cold.

    Indo, she does help with chopping up veggies etc. I don't want her to cook because during the day when she is alone with the baby I don't want her to lose focus and cooking can command a lot of attention. But even chopping the veggies is a big help for me.

  7. Sandeepa great to see you back on this space. I love paneer and love kichidi - and together this must be delish!

  8. Sandeepa dear,

    Don't worry, resolutions are for some lucky few, not for Moms, definitely not for the working Moms.

    Planning a week's menu always gives me shivers. Since the Saturday morning is always spent in gathering food items to float through the next Friday, Sat morning lunch/ Brunch preferably is outside. And by hook or crook to reserve most of the fruits hectic cooking for weekday conservation is challenging.

    About Big S, ... she is a big sister,now, may be this was one of the ways to declare independence. Passing phase I think,... so please bear with her.

    Will try the Paneer Khichuri, on
    a busy weeknight.

    Have a nice weekend with family.


    \Paneer khichuri is a good idea.

  9. Sandeepa,
    life is very busy for you I guess ..
    its good that inspite of this tight schedule ,you manage to cook for your loved ones and thats what is important shows how much you care ...
    love to big S and Lil A..
    paneer khichuri looks delicous!
    hugs and smiles

  10. Sandeepa, very new kind and lovely combination. Must have tasted delicious.

  11. Sandeepa congratulations! The baby will do good with the Nanny don't worry too much.

    Abot the khichuri sounds delicious, we are thinking about the same things.

  12. Long time! Glad to see you back! This is a winner:)

  13. Paneer Khichuri looks great! I am going to try this.

    Whenever I cook ahead for a weekdays, it gets over so quickly that I have stopped doing so. I can imagine how much quicker it must be for you with so many people at home. I had heard from a relative that she fries her fishes in advances, and makes her prep work in advance during the week so that cooking is quicker during the week. When time is short, I make lots of daal, and make a quick stirfry/curry with frozen veggie. It's not as tasty as something made from fresh veggie, but it is healthier than frozen/take out.

    Kudos to you for posting, although you are so busy. I am glad yo have a bit of help now. This is when we miss joint family and relatives, na ?

  14. I can do with some paneer kichdi....does make the simple kichdi sound so exotic! Good to read your posts again! Keep writing whenever you can.:)

  15. Happy New Year, Sandeepa! This continues to be a great blog for creative and original Bong recipes.

  16. Hi Sandeepa,

    I started following your blog sometime in early 2008 and liked it a lot. Chanced upon it while looking for the recepie for aloo dum one day. Good to se you back after so long!

    Congrats on the little one. I liked your planning thing for the week. Pretty much in the same boat as you -returning to work after a long time and there is a little one to look after. So I really related to this post.

    Always nice reading your posts. Keep it coming.

  17. Meeta

    Thanks. Anything that makes life least for me.

    deesha -- Thank U

    BWM -- I have shifted "gathering food" to midweek, to help keep my weeend mornings free.

    Jaya -- Cook na korle khabo ki....bairer khabar khaoa jay na shob shomoy

    Soma -- thank you

    Anjali -- Liked your khichdi too and thank you :)

    SunshineMom -- :)

    Mystic -- yeah I miss my Mom :( I too make lottttts of Dal and always freeze a portion of it.

    Jyo -- right, paneer does give khichdi some status :)

    Shantanu -- Ooohhh, thanks :)

    Shreya -- Your daughter is a cutie

  18. Recipe sounds lovely. I haven't seen a copy of Sananda for years. Brought back memories of old days in Kolkata!! Happy eating and feeding...

  19. what a pain it is, deciding the menu for each day. I`ve been trying to cook things in a bulk - so it can last for a couple of days. But then I get tired of my own cooking :( and dont feel like having the same thing for 3 days at a stretch! The khichuri looks positively yum! lemme give this a shot!

  20. This will surely be added to my recipes!!!

  21. Good to see you back!!! Happy New Year! and what is motherhood without the guilt? - Fatherhood! :)

    Take care and looking forward to some mroe yummy recipes this year!

  22. This comment has been removed by the author.

  23. Hi Sandeepa di,
    I simply love reading your blog..been almost a year since I bumped into it have got kind of addicted to it :) Whenever I feel homesick or crave for bong food (have been married for a year in Bangalore) I look up your blog for your recipes and the tiny chit chats you temper them with :) and believe me..they make me really happy and hungry as well..:)
    Please keep your blog. Congrats on the new addition to the family btw..Little S must be thrilled!


  24. Do send this to FIC-Yellow! Will be happy to have it there:)

  25. Sandeepa, a post with some more info on the Famous Five -

  26. Congratulations on your lil one, Sandeepa!!! Khichdi is one of my fav...Adding Paneer is a good twist!! :) Happy Sankranti!

  27. Hey Sandeepa, Can you post a recipe for 'puli'? I did check out the recipe for pati-shapta in one of your older posts and am a lil apprehensive about it. I dont think I can manage to make it. Maybe puli would be easier huh?

  28. Maybe the 'micro' menu plan needs to be 'macro-sized'! ;) Kudos to you for not only thinking of, but implementing a cook-ahead menu plan! I could never be so disciplined.

    I love khichdi -- one of the few homemade staples I've made over the past weeks. And I love paneer -- paneer makes anything better that's my motto ;)

    Never made khichdi with whole urad... but first I have to get me some paneer... :):)

    Dear Sandeepa, Happy New Year to you all!

  29. I dont make any resolutions because i cant stick to them. The paneer khichri looks delicious Sandeepa- sure is a special way of dressing up the mundane khichri.

  30. Hello, first time here. You have a really gud lukin blog and a nice way with words :-)

  31. Paneer khichuri sounds new Sandeepa! Shomoyer obhabe alada alada ranna na kore eirokom khichuri khub chole ... tai na? Ami shob torkari ar dal ekshonge kore ekta Dalna kore di.
    Ruti / bhaat er songe hoye jaye.:-)

  32. Me again! I said I would be glad to have you over at FIC, and missed - bad bad event organiser:( SORRY! Could you link it? I am adding it right away!

  33. It came out Amazing....thank you for the hubby and i just loved it...


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