Rice Flour Khichu / Steamed Spiced Rice Flour is a popular non fried, hot, street food snack from Gujarat (India). It is easy to make, digestible, soft and a treat to your palate. It is perfect light lunch or afternoon snack and is gluten free and vegan. Live stalls selling khichu are seen during festival of Navratri or even in the weddings.
Now a days my son Aarav enjoys khichu and asks me to make it frequently for his after school snack. Making khichu takes me back to Gujarat. Khichu is sold there as a street food especially during the festivals of Navratri. There are food stalls around for the people who come to play Garba and one of the popular stall is of khichu. Now a days live stalls making khichu are in demand in wedding food.
In Gujarat ladies of the house will make rice flour papad with the help of their neighbourhood ladies. The papad are made in huge quantities and dried and stored for entire year. The process of making papad takes the entire day. The first step is to make rice flour khichu. Very strong hands are needed to make khichu as it requires quick and constant stirring to prevent lump formation in the flour. The khichu is further processed and rolled to make rice papad. The rolled papad are dried in the sunlight and when dried entirely they are good to be stored for the entire year. The dried papad can be roasted on open flame or deep fried or microwaved and served as a accompaniment with lunch or dinner. The ladies who are making papad will keep aside some of the khichu and have it for their lunch. They will also share the khichu also known as papad no lot with their neighbours and friends. Papad Khar (alkaline salt) is added to make papad. It is an important ingredient while making papad. It helps in getting light texture and crispiness to the papad and helps in expansion of papad when roasted or deep fried. It also contributes to longer shelf life of papad.
But papad khar is not always available in out kitchen pantry and hence cooking soda can be used while making khichu for snack.
The khichu is light on stomach and is easily digestible. It has soft and smooth texture. Khichu can be made using different flours such as sorghum (jowar), red millet flour (ragi or nachni). It can be flavored by adding fresh methi leaves or fresh garlic leaves.
So friends do try this recipe for your afternoon snack and share your feed back with me!!
Till then khao dilse, khilao dilse aur banao dilse…
Rice Flour Khichu / Steamed Spiced Rice Flour
- heavy bottom pot
- wooden stick
- 1 cup rice flour I have used coarse rice flour
- 3 cup water
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- 1/2 tsp ginger green chili paste add more chili if you want it to be more spicy
- 1/8 tsp baking soda or pinch
- salt to taste
- 4 tsp oil for garnishing
- 1 tsp pickle masala to sprinkle on top (if you do not have pickle masala then use red chili powder)
- In a heavy bottom pot add water, cumin seeds, ginger chili paste, salt and mix well and keep it to boil.
- Once the water starts to boil, add baking soda and mix well. (Bubbles will form and water will rise when you add soda so be careful). Boil for a minute.
- Lower the heat and gradually add rice flour in batches while stirring quickly with a wooden stick or spoon. You have to be very quick while doing this process to avoid the formation of lumps.
- The water will be absorbed by the rice flour. Keep on stirring on low heat.
- Cover and cook on low heat for 5-7 minutes. Stir and switch off the heat and cover with lid and keep aside for 5 minutes.
- Now in another pan or steamer boil the water. Place a stand in it.
- Grease a plate with oil and put half of the rice mixture in it and spread evenly with a spoon. Put the plate in the steamer. Cover the pan or steamer with a lid and cook for 7-8 minutes on medium heat.
- Open the lid. The piping hot khichu is ready to serve.
- Serve khichu in four serving bowls. Sprinkle some pickle masala on each khichu. (for gluten free add chili powder). Pour a tsp of oil on each bowl and serve piping hot khichu. The khichu can be packed in a insulated box and can be packed for picnic.