Sabudana Khichdi (Sago)

6 Aug

When Indians fast for religious purposes, most of the times, they end up eating more because the “allowed” food is rarely prepared and is tempting when the tummy is growling. I am not sure if all the attempts of sacrificing our favorite daily food reaches God and if he blesses us based on this type of sacrifice, people will hardly get blessed! We eat more than usual at times of fasting.  In many western parts of India, the most famous fasting food is Sabudana Khichdi. Sabudana is sago or tapioca. It is dried and made into flour and then goes through a plant and ends up looking like white pearls. Well, I am more interested in eating rather than knowing what it is! this dish does need overnight soaking. Just a heads-up.

Tip: Be careful with soaking the sabudana in water. You don’t want a soggy or sticky khichdi.  If you see sabudana sticking while its getting cooked, splash a little milk about 1-2 tsp in it. Khichdi will become soft and not sticky.

All you need:

  1. 1 cup Sabudana or tapioca pearls small variety (found in Indian stores, prepped a day before)
  2. 3 tbsp Ghee or clarified butter/ Oil I use half-half ratio
  3. 3 Green Chillies finely chopped
  4. 1 Potato boiled and thinly diced (optional)
  5. Cumin seeds – 1/2 tbsp
  6. 1/2 cup roasted peanut powder (Roast peanuts without the skin on a pan. Cool and grind)
  7. 1 tsp sugar
  8. Salt as required
  9. 2 tbsp Cilantro chopped  (for garnishing)
  10. Lemon juice or wedge (for garnishing)
  11. Yogurt as needed (to serve,optional)

Ready, Set, Go:

  1. Wash Sabudana thoroughly but gently – 3-4 times. Do not rub or crush it in hands. Drain.
  2. Add water except just a little that is about 1/4 cup or just covering the sabudana enough. Cover and soak overnight. Next day, it will double in size, check if it breaks easily if you press it between fingers. And they should not stick to each other otherwise you will end up having a rock like texture and will be hard to chew. If they don’t break easily, add just a little water in the vessel less than a quarter cup and cover for an hour. Drain the entire water.
  3. Mix in half the peanut powder in the sabudana gently.
  4. Heat ghee/oil in a pan on a medium heat and add as soon as the oil is hot, add cumin seeds and let it change color in about 10-15 seconds.
  5. Add green chillies and the potato pieces here. Let it cook for less than a minute.
  6. Stir in the sabudana. Mix gently.
  7. Keep stirring for around 5 minutes on high until they are are almost cooked.
  8. Reduce heat and cook for around 7-8 minutes. Check if the sabudana is no more white from inside. If you see its still white, cook for a few more minutes.
  9. Add salt, add sugar. Mix gently.
  10. Add the remaining peanut powder.
  11. Garnish with chopped cilantro and lemon wedge or sprinkle lemon juice. Serve with yogurt!
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