Kitchari is a very simple Indian dish made only with spices, rice, lentils/beans and sometimes seasonal vegetables. It is nourishing and perfect for pacifying Kapha body types - but can be classified as tri-doshic with slight alteration given each individual's constitution. Kitchari is particularly beneficial when we need to cleanse the body just generally or from an over-indulgent time of eating such as holidays and the festive seasons. The spices such as ginger, cumin and turmeric have a pungent and drying effect for balancing the Kapha dosha that can become easily unbalanced through too many sweet, sour and salty foods. This is also a good recipe for Vata body types. For Pitta individuals, you can omit the mustard seeds.
WHAT YOU WILL NEED
1/2 cup of soaked mung beans
1/2 cup of basmati rice
3-4 cups of filtered water
1 tbs ghee or coconut oil
1-2cm piece of fresh ginger, grated or finely chopped
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp ground cumin seeds
1 tsp of fennel seeds
1 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
Himalayan rock salt to taste
Optional - A handful of fresh seasonal vegetables finely chopped and a wedge of fresh lemon and coriander to serve.
Soak lentils and rice separately for approximately 6 hours or overnight with just enough water to cover. This will help remove excess gasses that can aggravate the Vata dosha and disturb digestion.
Heat ghee in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds and fennel seeds to the ghee. Stir gently until the spices become aromatic and begin to pop. Now add the fresh ginger, turmeric and coriander powder. Stir for 1-2 minutes until aromatic.
Rinse the rice and mung beans, strain and then add to the spices, stirring quickly to combine and toast evenly (approximately 1 minute).
Add the filtered water. If you would like to add some vegetables to your kitchari, please add now also. Bring to a boil, then immediately lower temperature to a low simmer, cover and cook for approximately 20-30 minutes until the rice, mung beans and vegetables are cooked and soft. Add Himalayan salt to taste and sprinkle over some lemon juice or fresh coriander if desired.
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