Lemon-Turmeric Booster, Khichdi, Meal Planning Help

Good morning. Yesterday was a big news day in the coffee department: We found our old handheld milk frother, which made our morning cup, and therefore our morning, just a little bit better. I talked to my parents; I wrote about a delicious spring salad over at Cup of Jo; I planned to work on some book edits in the afternoon, but instead wound up curled up with the dogs watching The Social Network with Phoebe and getting lost down many ridiculous and brain-cell-killing twitter holes. (For those of you with kids in the youth soccer world, there was some drama, which made me feel like the world was actually normal for a minute or two!) Here are a few things you might want to tackle in your kitchen today…

Pantry: Khichdi

I started thinking about dinner yesterday at, like, lunch. All afternoon, I kept walking in and out of the kitchen, opening and closing the fridge and pantry, looking for inspiration, but just finding the same old bags of beans and rice and crickets. (Our weekly grocery delivery arrives today.) Finally, I told Andy he was in charge and retired to the TV room where the dogs were beckoning me from their respective sleepy sunspots. It’s amazing what a different set of eyes on the same pantry can do. By dinnertime, he was stirring up Priya Krishna’s Khichdi, which the Indian-ish author describes on instagram as “…perfect for anytime, especially now, since it uses mostly pantry ingredients. This is simple comfort food at its best – rice, mung beans, and spices cooked down to a dreamy texture, with plenty of ghee to boot.” You can swap in split peas or lentils for the mung beans. We ate with crusty bread, and topped with plain yogurt and a swirl of cilantro chutney. It’s my new favorite thing.

Project: Lemon-Turmeric Immunity Booster

Am I sick of baked goods? No. Am I tired of baking projects. Absolutely not. But I will say it’s nice to walk into the kitchen to see Abby whirling up an immunity booster. I don’t even know how on earth she made it, or what it’s supposed to be capable of boosting or curing, but it felt good — at least psychologically — to take a shot this morning. When I asked her what she threw in the Vitamix, she told me 4 cups water, “1/5 cup turmeric” (love that), 1/4 cup sliced ginger, 2 tablespoons maple syrup, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, a grind or two of pepper, 1 tablespoon of coconut cream. (That’s what we had; just wing it with whatever kind of coconut product you have — water, milk, etc. — and freeze what’s leftover.) Strain if you don’t like your boosters pulpy. (Abby does not.) Bottom’s up!

Purpose: Cool Meal Plan Tool

Under the category of “staying sane,” I love this new Cook with What You Have planning tool. Click up to three things you’ve got in the pantry and see what recipes come up at the bottom. It’s more addictive than TikTok.

Stay safe, stay home. 

The goal of the Project, Pantry, Purpose series to keep us sane, distracted, and connected. Please continue to comment below with suggestions for recipes, projects (for kids and adults), good deeds, donation ideas, stories, movies, games, puzzles. Or just tell me how you’re doing, what your daily routine is, and especially how DALS can help you or people in your community. You can also email me directly at jenny@dinneralovestory.com.

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Thanks for this – I’m a high school Foods studies teacher in Alberta, Canada. It’s been hard (to say the least) as I’ve got someone who is sick in my house . Lots of worry right now . I’m sharing out the link to the recipe/meal plan tool. It IS addictive and will meet my sr. students request for more meal type recipes.

Thanks – you are a breath of fresh air. I’m picking up the immunity booster ingredients next shop and making it for myself. Every little bit helps at this point.


It’s a jarred condiment we had from way back when. You can just use fresh chopped cilantro if you have it. That’s what we would’ve done.


I know what you mean by this, but as a mathematics instructor, this comment made me burst out laughing. Of course, there is such a thing as 1/5 cup, we just may not be able to measure it out exactly using the common measuring tools we use. This made me think: (1) are we missing out on important flavour combinations by limiting ourselves to certain ratios of ingredients? (2) I am going to use this as an example when I talk about irrational numbers like pi. Pi exists on the number line, even though we are not able to express it as a fraction of the counting numbers (the closest approximation is 22/7). So thank you for that!


Of course there is. And actually, it is 3.2 Tablespoons… there are 16 Tb. in a cup, divided by 5 = 3.2

Medha Srivastava

I’m from India (living in Germany for about 3 years now), and seeing this post made my heart happy! I generally love your blog, I absolutely LOVE the way you write- and I love the comfort that your posts have brought me during this strange and scary time. Thank you! Also, GHEE! 🙂 (I happened to eat some Spinach Dal and rice with a big dollop of it earlier this week)

Anna Monreal

Hi Jenny, stumbled across your story and @ 430am, couldn’t sleep. wasn’t if I was feeling blue or just overwhelmed. Reading your inspiring dish ideas gave me a uplift all of a sudden. I suffer from Lupus and at this time we enduring, I can say It soothing when i see or read something that actually relaxes me in a way. I can’t wait to try some of your dishes mentioned. thanks for your post and my stumble..


Thank you, Jenny, the Kichdi recipe looks delicious, I plan to make it tomorrow. I’m reading you from France, It’s a pleasure to visit your blog everyday, knowing there will be a new Episode of “PPP” to read. Such little moments help in a day.

Melanie Charter

Hi Jenny,

I am loving these posts. They are so positive, hopeful, real and make me feel good to read them. I just had the thought-why don’t I make my own PPP everyday? I kind of do, but just informally. It would be a fun way to pass the time now that we’re in so deep. I am constantly thinking about baking, cooking, feeding my family and all that entails. On top of all the other things right now working from home, keeping my toddler from destroying things and schooling my 9 and 6 year olds from home

I’ve been reading your blog a long time and it’s always a delight. Thank you.


Thanks for the shout-out to Khichdi – I have been making it ever since the NYT posted a recipe. Theirs is less soupy, and I like it that way but I will now start to experiment with adding asafoetida.
Btw, I have discovered (since back in March and April it was impossible to get basmati at the grocery store) that khichdi works great with risotto rice – it adds some texture.