Kitchari is the official cleansing dish of Ayurveda. It is uniquely designed with all-doshas in mind, with all macronutrients in mind and with digestive sensitivities in mind. Think of a kitchari cleanse like a fast that doesn't allow you to get fully depleted. It's heavy enough to give you satisfaction but light enough to have you ready for the next meal within 4 hours of the last. The trick with this cleanse is to eat ¾ of your usual meal portions and avoid snacking in between.
Tri-Doshic Ayurvedic Kitchari [Vegan]
- 1 tablespoon unrefined organic coconut oil (pitta), sunflower oil (kapha)
- 1 cup fresh coconut, grated
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 8 black peppercorns, crushed
- 1.5 teaspoons turmeric powder
- 1/4 teaspoon clove powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
- 1/4 teaspoon cardamom powder
- pinch of asafoetida (hing)
- 2 teaspoons trikatu powder (half this amount for pitta imbalance)
- 1 teaspoon shatavari
- 1/2 cup or 2 stalks green onions, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2-inch piece fresh ginger, grated
- 1 cup soaked and rinsed yellow mung dal
- 1 stalk celery, chopped small
- 1/2 butternut (1 lb) squash or kabocha squash, peeled and chopped into chunks (lessen or omit for kapha imbalance)
- 1 cup aged sona masoori rice, soaked and washed (Kapha's or kapha imbalanced people should swap out rice for barley)
- 1 medium-sized zucchini
- 6 asparagus stalks, chopped roughly
- 6 collard leaves (2 cups), washed, deveined and chopped thinly
- 5-6 cups filtered water
- 1 can no-guar organic coconut milk (if freshly grated coconut is not available)
- 1 cup fresh cilantro
- 1 teaspoon pink Himalayan salt
- 1/2 lime for garnish
- Measure out the whole spices and set aside. Measure out the powder spices and place them into a small bowl.
- Chop the green onion and garlic. Grate the fresh ginger and set them all aside in a separate bowl.
- Heat a large saucepan over medium heat and add your oil or ghee. Once hot, add in the cumin seeds, fennel seeds and black pepper.
- Sauté for 30 seconds to 1 minute or until fragrant being careful not to burn the seeds.
- Add in the freshly grated coconut, turmeric powder, clove powder, cinnamon powder, cardamom powder, pinch of asafetida, shatavari, and trikatu powder. Sauté for 30 seconds.
- Then add your green onions, fresh ginger, garlic. Stirring constantly, sauté for an additional 30 seconds.
- Add the celery, yellow mung dal, and butternut squash plus two pinches of salt then sauté for 1 minute and allow the spices to marry with the beans.
- Pour the water and coconut milk (if using) into the pan and cover the pot.
- Let it come to a boil then crack the pot cover to prevent overflow. Cook here for 15-20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes.
- As the beans are cooking, begin to chop the zucchini, asparagus, and collard greens and wash your rice.
- After the 15 minutes is up, add in the rice and allow that to cook for 10 minutes.
- Add the zucchini, asparagus and collard greens to the pan. Stir well and place the cover back onto the pot, leaving a small crack. Reduce the heat slightly to a low-medium setting and cook for 12 minutes.
- Stir every 3 to 4 minutes during the remaining cooking time. If the kitchari becomes too thick, carefully add more water by the quarter cup.
- After 12 minutes, turn the heat to low, cover the pan completely and cook for 3 additional minutes, stirring halfway.
- Turn off the heat and take the pan off of the hot burner. Add in the cilantro, fresh lime juice, and salt. Stir well and then cover for an additional 3 minutes to let all of the flavors soak in.
- Once you are ready to serve, garnish each individual bowl with extra cilantro, a lime wedge, shredded coconut, and ghee (if you consume ghee).
- Take a deep breath, sit comfortably in a peaceful space, and enjoy with good company!