All-Seasons Simple Tridoshic Kitchari
140g mung dhal/whole mung bean
60g basmati rice
800 ml water
2 tsp ghee
2 cloves of fresh garlic
Inch square of fresh ginger
1 tsp cumin seed
1 tsp black mustard seed
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp ginger powder
½ tsp black pepper
Pinch of curry leaves
Small handful of fresh coriander leaves
Salt and pepper to season
Optional: Asafoetida, fennel, cinnamon, cardamom, fenugreek, saffron or wild garlic (in spring)
Option: 3-4 different fresh seasonal vegetables
About this Recipe
If you haven't heard of Kitchari, you're a bit behind on the times! Ayurveda's ultimate digestion soothing and cleansing bowl is growing in popularity as it is the perfect remedy for soothing the soul and the gut, helping us to take a 'time out' from the intensity of modern living and eating. Kitchari is easy to digest, suitable for for all dosha, low in calorie, high in fibre, Agni strengthening and gut cleansing making it our mostly highly recommended food for digestive health and overall cleansing, weight loss and toxin removal!
1-2 hours (depending on whether you use an instant pot)
Start by soaking the split mung dal and rice, either separately or together, overnight (or for at least four hours)
After soaking, strain and rinse the lentils/rice at least 3 times until the water runs clear
In a large saucepan cook your lentils and rice together with water on a medium heat for 45-60 minutes. Alternatively, in two medium sauces pans cook your rice and lentils separately (this will give you more texture to the rice). The lentils will take 40-50 minutes and the rice will take about 10 or you can cook for 20 minutes in an instat pot.
Once cooked, you should have a smooth porridge of lentils and rice or, if you have cooked them separately, have soft lentils and light fluffy rice.
Next, chop your chosen vegetables into medium to small pieces (small is better if you are frying, medium is good for steaming) and set these aside
Melt the ghee or other oil in a small frying pan over a medium heat and add the curry leaves, cook until they begin to crisp but are not yet brown
Add the black mustard seeds and cumin seeds and sauté for 1 minute, until the mustard seeds begin to pop
Add the fresh garlic and grated fresh ginger to the pan and sauté for 1 minute until the garlic turns a little brown and begins to stick
Now, add any vegetables you wish to fry (such as peppers, courgette etc) to the pan at this stage and cook until slightly browned
Next, add all the remaining dry spices (turmeric, cumin powder, ginger powder, black pepper and any optional extras) and cook for 1-2 minutes until the spices begin to release their fragrance (be careful not to burn)
Remove from the heat and transfer your fat, spice and vegetable mix from the frying pan to the saucepan
Add any remaining vegetables (unless you prefer to be steam these) the saucepan with the spices and water. Harder root vegetables should be allowed to soften before adding leafy greens.
Make sure the liquid covers all of the vegetables, if not add a little more water
Simmer on a medium heat for 10-20 minutes or until the water has evaporated and your vegetables are cooked through
Once cooked, add either the lentils or lentil/rice mixed to the fat, spice and vegetables
Cook on a very gentle heat for 5 minutes until everything is well mixed and warmed through (or longer if your kitchari seems too liquid)
Season well with salt and serve with remaining steamed vegetables, your rice/grains if you kept these separate, fresh herbs such as coriander, parsley or rosemary and, if you wish, a squeeze of lime or home-made chutney.