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A tribute to Tarla Dalal | Fada Ni Khichdi recipe

by Sonia on November 13, 2013

Post image for A tribute to Tarla Dalal | Fada Ni Khichdi recipe

“To The Woman Who Made Every Mummy A Masterchef”

This is my tribute to Tarla Dalal via this post. Being a Gujarati I’m very proud of her and I feel obliged to write this post just for her.

Tarla Dalal was undoubtedly India’s first vegetarian celebrity cook, who passed away at the age of 77 at her residence in Mumbai on last Wednesday 6th November. What a terrible news!

She was, still is and always will be my childhood inspiration and still remembering watching her TV shows and reading recipes in newspapers. It’s heart-breaking news for Indian women who follow her like me since many years.

broken wheat {daliya/gau na fada} 02| Seven Spice.jpg

She had developed millions of recipes including international recipes with her twists. She was the one who first introduced the Italian and Mexican food in India. Her first cookbook ‘The Pleasures of Vegetarian Cooking’ published in 1974, which became best-seller. After that initial success, she penned down more than 170 cookbooks. Her books and articles were translated in several Indian languages as well as in international languages like English, Dutch and Russian. Some of her well-known cookery books includes ‘The Complete Gujarati Cook Book’, ‘Know Your Flours’, ‘Healthy Breakfast’, ‘Sandwiches’, ‘Curries & Kadhies’, ‘Baked Dishes’ and ‘Delicious Diabetic Recipes: Low Calorie Cooking’ and many more to list down.

The Masterchefs trends came to this world very late, before she hosted her own multiple cookery shows and programs.

yellow split mung dal 01 | Seven Spice.jpg

For traditional Indian women, the cooking is an art and it must be taught before marriage. She helped millions of untrained brides and girls to master cooking skills. She also brought the method of exact measurement to ease the entire cooking process for amateur cooks.

If you’re interested in pure vegetarian and tasty dishes you should buy her one or two cookbooks.

I have tried thousands of recipes inspired from Tarla Dalal, but never caught a chance to share any. This time I picked her ‘Fada Ni Khichdi’ – it’s one pot meal and it’s truly lip-smacking good and delicious. You don’t need any other companion, as this dish is yummy itself. Just go with yogurt or buttermilk, your favourite pickle and papadam.

Fada= broken wheat/daliya. Khichdi = mixture of lentils and rice or broken wheat.

Fada ni Khichdi 02 | Seven Spice.jpg

{Print Recipe}

Fada Ni Khichdi {Spicy Broken Wheat & Mung Dal Khichdi}

enough for 4 servings

It’s a wholesome one pot meal made with nutritious broken wheat/daliya and yellow split moong dal, with choice of vegetables and spices. A very satisfying and filling meal, can be prepared in a jiffy.

Note: I reckon you may try this recipe in slow cooker too. I don’t have one but I believe you can.


  • ¾ C broken wheat (dalia/gau na fada)
  • 1 C yellow split moong dal
  • 2 Tbsp ghee + 1 Tbsp oil {or use just oil}
  • ½ inch piece cinnamon (dalchini)
  • 3 cloves (avang)
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
  • 1/2 tsp asafoetida (hing)
  • 1 C potato cubes
  • ¾ C green peas
  • 1 C cauliflower florets {I skipped}
  • 1 C chopped onions
  • 1 Tbsp ginger-green chilli paste
  • ½ tsp whole black peppercorns
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder (haldi)
  • 1 tsp chilli powder {or to taste}
  • salt to taste

For The Garnish
2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves

For Serving
fresh yogurt or buttermilk, pickle and papadam

How to:

1. Wash and soak the broken wheat/daliya and moong dal in enough water for 30 minutes. Drain and keep aside.

2. Heat the ghee+oil in a pressure cooker and add the cinnamon, cloves, cumin seeds and asafoetida.

3. When the seeds crackle, add all the remaining ingredients including the moong dal and broken wheat and sauté on a medium flame for 4 to 5 minutes.

4. Add 4 cups of hot water, mix well and pressure cook on high heat for 1 whistle on high heat and then lowest flame for 2 mins. If you like thick version of khichdi pressure cook it for 3-4 whistles. We like ours a bit runny and like a thick stew so only one whistle is enough.

5. Allow the steam to escape before opening the lid.

6. Stir the khichdi vigorously using a spoon, adding a little hot water if required, so that the dal and the broken wheat are mixed well.

7. Garnish with coriander and serve hot with fresh curds.

Tarla ji, thanks for sharing all your tasty recipes. We will miss you dearly! May your soul rest in peace!

Fada ni Khichdi 05 | Seven Spice.jpg

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