India is the largest producer of bajra or pearl millet in the world both in terms of area (9.3 million hectares) as well as production (8.3 million tons). It is grown in more than 30 countries across Asia, Africa and Latin America for household consumption as well as for trade.
In our country bajra is grown and consumed in abundance in Rajasthan and Gujarat. Apart from these two states it is grown in drier regions like in the state of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana. It is also used as a fodder for cattle. Many people in our country feed bajra to birds.
Earlier city folks ignored this grain and chose other highly expensive foreign exported grains for maintain healthy weight. But now people are more interested in bajra as they are becoming aware of its multiple health benefits. It is a healthy grain but doctors suggest that bajra should be taken in moderation and one should avoid its consumption during summers as it can cause digestive problems.
Bajra is very healthy grain that is a gluten-free, rich in iron, protein, fibre, magnesium and phosphorous. High fibre content in bajra helps in controlling diabetes and losing weight. It also contains phytic acid, tannins and phenols. All these antioxidants help in preventing ageing and metabolic diseases such as heart disease, stroke and cancer.
Just like bajra moong daal has its own benefits. It contains fibre, protein, iron and calcium. This dal regulates blood pressure and helps in reducing cholesterol.
When both the healthy ingredients are combined to make bajra moong dal and green pea khichdi, the result is a nutritious and tasty recipe. This recipe is very easy to make.
- 1/4 cup Bajra or millet
- 1/4 cup Moong dal or whole green gram
- 1/2 cup Green peas
- 1 cup tomatoes (chopped)
- 1/2 cup Onions (finely chopped)
- 8 Garlic cloves or 1 tbsp garlic paste
- 1 inch Ginger or ½ tbsp ginger paste
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 Green chilli
- 1 tsp Cumin seeds
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 A pinch of asafoetida
- 1/2 tsp garam masala
- Salt to taste
• Soak bajra and moong dal separately for 4-5 hours.
• Put bajra, moong dal, green peas and salt with a cup of water in pressure cooker. Cook all these together for 5 whistles
• Add oil to a non-stick pan. Put cumin seeds when the oil heats up.
• Wait till the cumin seeds crackle and then add asafoetida
• Add onions and sauté it for a minute
• Add all the other ingredients and cook for 2-3 minutes on a medium flame
• Add the cooked bajra, moong dal and green peas. Add ¼ cup of water to this mixture
• Cook it for 2-3 minutes on medium flame while stirring it occasionally
• Add garam masala and serve this khichdi hot