Haleem is a slow cooking dish. It takes quite a bit of planning and cooking time but don't get scared as every second is very well worth it. Traditionally it is made with beef. To make it healthier, i have made it with chicken. you can always replace it with beef if you like. It is a very satisfying dish, full of fiber and protein. Hope you like it as much as my family does. Plan it a day in advance as lentils and wheat needs to be soaked to achieve the texture. Here is how the recipe goes:
Lentils and grainsCracked or whole wheat 1 cup
Moong washed 1/4 cup
Masoor washed Lentils 1/4 cup
Maash washed 1/4 cup
Chana daal 1/4 cup
Oats 1/4 cup
Rice 1/4 cup
MeatChicken 1 whole 4-5 lbs
Onion 2 sliced thinly
Ginger 1 tbsp paste
Garlic 3 tbsp paste
Green chili 5-10 (to taste)
Tomato 2 medium
Salt 2-3 tsp or to taste
Red chili 1 tsp
Turmeric 1/2 tsp
Cumin powder 1 tsp
Coriander powder 1 tsp
Nutmeg 1 tsp
Garam masala 1-2 tbsp
Oil 1/2 cup
GarnishGinger 2 inch pc julienne
Green chili 5-8 thinly sliced
Onion 2 thinly sliced and browned and drained
Lemon 2-3 wedges
- Wash and soak wheat in warm water over night. Make sure water is at least 3-4 inches higher than the wheat in the bowl.
- Wash and soak all lentils together for 3-4 hours or preferably over night. Make sure they have enough water to soak in.
- Wash and soak rice and oats in a separate bowl over night or for at least a couple of hours.
- The next morning cook wheat on low heat till its very tender. The sign is when you press it between two fingers, it mashes easily. Blend them with hand blender till its barely chunky. Don't make a smooth paste. Do not discard the soaking liquid, use it in cooking and add more if required. Liquid should be at least 3-4 inches higher than the wheat.
- Cook all the lentils till they almost disappear in their own cooking liquid. You can use a blender to achieve the texture.
- Put rice and oats in the same liquid they are soaking in the pot. Cover with 3-4 inches of water and cook till they start looking like kheer/custard consistency.
- In a big pot, add oil and fry onions till they start browning on the edges.
- Put chicken, ginger, garlic and fry till chicken starts to change colour.
- Add green chili, tomato and all the spices. Fry till oil separates from the chicken.
- Add 1 cup of water and cover. Cook till chicken becomes tender and starts separating from the bone.
- Let cool and remove the bones from the chicken and use mortar and pestle to mash the chicken.
- Increase the heat and evaporate all the moisture from the chicken. You need to caramelize/ bhunofy the chicken at this stage.
- Once the masala has become grainy, or as my mother called it "it looks like pearls", drain the oil.
Now let's put haleem together.
- Mix lentils, rice, oats, wheat and meat in large pot. Its consistency should be a little thinner than the rice pudding. Using a wooden spoon, mix all of them together till they come to a boil. This is the time to taste for salt and spices, adjust if needed.
- Once it comes to a boil, lower the heat and cook for at least 45-60 mins till it starts bubbling like rice pudding. You need to stir it quite often at this stage as it sticks to the bottom very quickly and tends to burn easily.
- Pour the oil drained from the meat and serve hot with the garnish and hot naan.
Plz do not use store bought garam masala as it makes a huge difference in the final result