Kitchari - food for cleansing and rebalancing virginia compton

Kitchari – food for cleansing and rebalancing


It’s good occasionally, especially at the time when the seasons change in Spring and Autumn, to enjoy a 3 day Ayurvedic cleanse. It’s a very simple process. All you need to eat is kitchari. This is a mixture of rice and moong daal (small yellow lentils). It’s all cooked together in one pot. You can also add some vegetables.

Kitchari (pronounced kich-uh-ree) is the traditional cleansing food of Ayurveda. It is a combination of split moong lentils and white basmati rice with plenty of spices, depending on your constitution. It’s important to use white rice because it’s easier to digest. The combination of rice and moong dal provides all the amino acids needed to form a complete protein. Eaten on their own, each of these foods is missing one or more of the essential amino acids that our bodies are not able to make on their own. However, together they make magic happen! The protein content of kitchari supports stable blood sugar levels so that energy and mental clarity are balanced during the cleansing process.

Here’s the recipe….
1 cup/200g yellow moong dal
1⁄2 cup/100g white basmati rice
2 tbs ghee (or vegetable oil)
4 cardamom pods, cracked
2 cloves
5 cups of water (minimum)

1 teaspoon each of:
Ground coriander
Ground cumin
Fennel seeds
Black mustard seeds
Cumin seeds
2–5 cups of chopped seasonal vegetables

Rinse the moong dal and rice until the water runs clear.
Measure out all of the spices.
Heat the ghee or oil in a large pot. Add all of the spices and sauté together on a medium heat for a minute until fragrant.
Stir in the moong dal and rice. Add the 5 cups of water.
Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer, lid on.
Cook for at least 40 minutes, or until the dal and rice are completely soft (easily squashed between finger and thumb), the kitchari has a porridge-like consistency and the ghee or oil has risen to the top, adding more water if necessary.
SLOW COOKER OPTION! If you have a slow cooker you can easily prepare this on a medium heat for 4-5 hours.

Add vegetables at the appropriate time for them to cook in the kitchari, or cook them separately.
Adjust the seasoning and garnish with fresh chopped coriander and parsley if you like.