Kitchari Rice

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By Esther Boateng

Rice is one of my favorite staple foods. It’s incredibly easy to prepare and lends itself well to a variety of dishes. If you add fragrant herbs, spices, vegetable powders, and a protein to your rice, you can create a satisfying meal to please most palates. Kitchari is a nourishing Ayurvedic dish made with rice and a variety of spices like coriander and fennel, which aid digestion; some people in the Ayurveda community even consume it as part of a cleanse. 

This recipe is incredibly versatile. You can add any type of vegetable such as asparagus tips or peas; however, this is entirely optional, and you only need the following ingredients to make a basic recipe: rice, turmeric powder and ghee, plus these spices that coincidentally all begin with ‘c’: coriander, cumin, caraway, cardamom, and clove. 

There’s more than one way to prepare this meal. Instead of cooking the rice and mung beans separately, (if you are using this ingredient), you can cook everything together at the same time, including the seasoning, and let it boil and then simmer for approximately 20 minutes until everything is cooked.

Dukkah (pronounced doo-kah) is an Egyptian spice mixture. Although you can probably buy it at your local grocery store, I think it’s more fun to make your own blend, and perhaps include pine nuts or sunflower seeds whenever you want to switch things up. Also, to make life easier, you can prepare your own version of the Dukkah blend, ahead of time. I particularly like this version: black sesame seeds, smoked paprika, turmeric, saffron, Threefold Blend (Spicy), Pepper Salt, fennel seeds, coriander, cumin, caraway, cardamom, and clove. Blend these ingredients (grinding with a mortar and pestle as needed) until you get a fine powder. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a month. If you don’t have access to fresh seeds, the ground powder versions work equally well.


1 comment

  • Robin Janis

    Delicious sounding. Mustard seeds are also super delicious in Kitchari! And great idea adding burdock powder which seem to add to all veggies I cook!

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