Kitchari Bowl

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If we were really talking hierarchy, kitchari would win the prize every time. Ayurveda considers it to be the most nourishing dish, with its high nutrient content and ease of digestibility. Yet, there are more ways to work with mung beans and I feel they deserved to be explored!

Kitchari is made mung beans, basmati rice and spices, cooked to a porridge-like state. It’s used for Ayurvedic cleanses and panchakarmas and as a grounding food for any moment you feel you need to find your equilibrium again.

While I would always promote kitchari to be used for your more traditional cleansing needs, this kitchari bowl gives you a fresh take using the same ingredients and similar spices. This specific version uses a garlic, lemon tahini sauce that gives the sometimes monotonous flavor of kitchari a boost. This is a super meal for any season, given you’re using either doshic specific or seasonally available foods, and would also be a good option for pre- and post- cleanse. You can even try it for breakfast!

Photo by Suzanne Corum-Rich
Photo by Suzanne Corum-Rich

Kitchari Bowl with Roasted Veggies and Lemon Tahini Sauce

  • 1 cup split yellow mung beans (rinsed and soaked)
  • 1 cup white basmati rice
  • pinch of mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, coconut oil or ghee (+ some to drizzle roasted veg)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 5 carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/4 inch strips
  • juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • avocado and cilantro to garnish

Prep time: 15 min. | Total time: 45 min.

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. In a small pot, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add mustard seeds. As they begin to pop, add onion, cumin, turmeric and stir. Sauté 1-2 minutes. Add mung beans and a little salt and pepper and sauté while stirring occasionally for 1-2 minutes. Add 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer and cover. Cook until water is absorbed and the mung beans are soft (they may even start to fall apart).
  2. If you have a rice cooker, this is the ultimate convenient way to cook the rice. If not, bring 1 1/2 cup water and rice to boil in a small pot. Cover and reduce to simmer. Cook 15 minutes or until the water is absorbed.
  3. Toss sweet potato and carrots in a medium bowl with a drizzle of oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Spread the veggies evenly over a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until they are tender.
  4. While you're juggling all these things, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, tahini and a pinch of salt to a blender. Blend until smooth, adding water to create the desired consistency of your sauce.
  5. When all the timers have buzzed and the beans and rice are fully cooked, divide rice among 2-4 bowls (hey, I don't know how hungry you are). Spoon mung beans and veggies onto rice and drizzle sauce over the top. Hold up, you may want more sauce. Garnish with some cilantro and please, please, try this with some avo.

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