Cooking in self-isolation: Nourishing Club's Ayurvedic kitchari recipe is good for the body and soul.
Eating kitchari is my solution to resting the digestive system. It's the chicken soup of Indian cuisine; a wholesome and nourishing dish that you crave when you're sick, or turn to for an easy meal. It's made from a blend of soaked rice and lentils that resemble a chunky porridge when cooked. The word kitchari literally translates to "a mess of", and this dish is exactly that: a delicious mess of lentils, rice and spices.
The simplicity of kitchari is what makes it so easy to stomach. Pre-soaked lentils and rice increase the digestibility of the nutrients in these foods, making them readily absorbable– rest assured, by pre-soaking, you're maximising the goodness available in this dish.
Ayurvedic Kitchari Recipe
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
4 cardamom pods
1 cinnamon quill
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
1 tablespoon freshly grated turmeric
1/2 cup red lentils, soaked overnight
1/2 cup mung dal, soaked overnight
1/2 cup red rice (or brown or basmati), soaked overnight
3 1/5 cups water
Juice of half a lime
Handful chopped coriander (including stems)
1/4 cup cashews, soaked for at least 1 hour
Juice of 1/2 a lime
1 tablespoon coconut flakes
Heavy pinch salt
1/4 cup water
Heat coconut oil in a large saucepan to a medium heat, then add the coriander and cumin seeds to the pan. Listen for when you hear the coriander seeds pop.
When the coriander seeds have popped, add in the other spices and salt, along with the ginger and turmeric and cook for about 30 seconds - 1 minute.
Add the lentils, mung dal and rice to the pan, stir, then pour in all the water.
Bring saucepan to boil, then reduce to simmer and cook for 30-35 minutes. At this stage, all the water should be absorbed, and the lentils and rice will have softened to a chunky, porridge-like consistency.
Blend or process ingredients for lime cashew cream until combined.
Squeeze the lime juice into the saucepan and stir-through the coriander. Serve with lime cashew cream, or yoghurt.
Kate Levins is a qualified holistic nutritionist, cook and founder of Nourishing Club.