Kitchari: Ayurvedic Mung Daal and Basmati Rice

I posted a picture of my lunch on instagram today and was asked for the recipe. There are so many variations out there for Kitchari, even another one on THIS BLOG, and I rarely follow a recipe exactly, but today's lunch was based on a the recipe below by Gayatri*.

Ingredients:

1 cup mung daal  (soaked over night)

1 cup basmati rice

2 tbsp fresh ginger, chopped.

1.5 tbsp cumin seeds

2 tbsp turmeric

4 cinnamon sticks

5-6 cups of water (more if adding veggies)

1/2 cup coriander to garnish

Optional: add chopped veggies like pumpkin, zucchini, tomatoes or whatever is in season.

Tempering Ingredients: tempering is a technique to flavour the daal after it's cooked.

2-3 tbsp oil or ghee

2 tbsp curry leaves-

2 tsp black mustard seeds, crushed

Note: I did not temper my kitchari, I added some coconut milk and a squeeze of lime instead.

Method:

Soak mung daal overnight before cooking. Wash thoroughly, add 2 cups water, put on medium heat and bring to boil.As it starts to boil, remove whit scum that comes to surface of water, until it looks clear. Now add ginger, cumin seeds and turmeric. Simmer for about an hour until daal is soft and creamy. Remove from heat and set aside.

Heat oil on medium in a wok. Add curry leaves and crushed mustard seeds. Let it turn a pinkish reddish colour. Pour over the daal mix.

SERVES: 3-4 people

* Recipe by Gayatri, an Ayurvedic Cook based in Sydney.

** Daal is highly nutritious and very light on the digestive system. Even when digestive power is low it is digested easily and keeps tummy happy. Ayurveda calls Mung Daal "chips of gold for health"