Tuesday, January 13, 2009

RECIPE ~ Warming Kichadi

Several Ayurvedic cookbooks give an assortment of recipes for kichadi (or kitcharee). Depending on the ingredients, it's healing for one ailment or another, but the basis is always mung beans, rice, and digestive spices slow cooked into a soft stew. This one is good for stimulating digestion and circulation, and is particularly soothing on a chilly night.

1/2 cup basmati rice, washed
1/4 cup split mung beans, washed
6 cups water
1 Tbsp ghee*
1 tsp cumin seeds

2 Tbsp ghee
1 tsp each ground turmeric, coriander, cardamom, black pepper, cinnamon and sea salt
1/2 tsp each cumin and ground cloves
2 bay leaves
1 Tbsp fresh grated ginger
1/2 onion, chopped small
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups fresh chopped vegetables (carrots, zucchini, celery, green beans...)
2 cups fresh chopped greens (spinach, kale, chard...)

chopped fresh cilantro or parsley, drizzle of tahini or Bragg to garnish (optional)

In a large saucepan, heat 1 Tbsp ghee and add cumin seeds. Brown lightly, then add the rice and mung beans, stirring to coat. Add water, bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 45 minutes.

In a small skillet, heat 2 Tbsp ghee and add all dry spices plus bay leaves. Saute a few minutes, then stir in onion, garlic and ginger. Allow to combine a few minutes, then add to rice and mung along with the greens. Cover and cook 20 minutes longer. For a creamier stew, puree half the kichadi in a blender or with a hand-held. Serve garnished with herbs and/or a drizzle of tahini and/or a splash of Bragg or tamari, maybe even a squirt of lemon. Serves 3-4.

*NOTE: ghee is an ayurvedic dairy fat that is supposed to be healing and soothing for digestion and good for all doshas. For vegan diets, replace with olive or sunflower oil.

VATAS choose from carrots, asparagus, zucchini, green beans, peas, spinach and squash
PITTAS choose from asparagus, celery, green beans, zucchini, any leafy greens and peas; omit cloves, reduce garlic and bay leaf to 1 each
KAPHAS choose any vegetables except squash and zucchini; garnish with herbs only


Anonymous said...

Thank you for these great recipes! I love the notes at the end for each dosha. They are extremely helpful for someone like me who is just starting to get into ayurveda. I had a question about kichadi-can I use whole mung beans instead of split? I would soak them appropriately, of course. I think this would give me more fiber than split.

Claudia Davila (Fran) said...

Thanks for your very positive comment! And yes, you can absolutely use whole mung beans.

Hayley said...

This sounds so warming and nutritious. Thanks for all the great recipes.

jh said...

Great recipe--I have been making this for several weeks for my mother who is going through chemotherapy and cannot eat much. I have found that this is so nutritious and restoritive that it keeps her nourished even if she can only manage half a cup at a time. Thanks for the new recipe, I will have to try it out.


Claudia Davila (Fran) said...

Wow, I'm really glad this meal is so nourishing for your mom, JH. I was really moved by your note. I truly wish all the best for your mother.

jessica said...

I finally got around to making this one...another amazing recipe! So very delicious, and a wonderful change from my usual kichadi.
Thank you Claudia!

Katharine said...

I made a variation of kichadi tonight for dinner and mine came out much mushier than yours looks--almost like oatmeal. It was still yummy, though! My question is: can you freeze kichadi to eat later? I made a HUGE batch accidentally and I am only one person...oops. Thanks again for your wonderful blog...I have made a few recipes and have loved them all :)

Claudia Davila (Fran) said...

That's great, Jessica! : )

Katharine, I'm so glad you like these recipes! Did you puree it completely that it turned out so creamy? As for freezing, yes you can certainly freeze them in batches, lasting a month or so in the freezer. Just a note that according to Ayurveda, it's best to eat foods fresh everyday (though in these busy modern days it's hard to avoid leftovers!).

jindi said...

Yoga holds that a person’s health condition depends on himself. It lays emphasis on physical, mental and emotional balance and development of a sense of harmony with all of life. There’s nothing mystical about it.Nor is it external. Rather it is an inner faculty. Yoga endeavors to re-establish inner balance through a variety of ways, ranging from the gross to the subtle. Which is why it is considered a holistic art.Rather than prescribe treatments, yoga therapy encourages awareness. Through age-old yogic techniques, we get to know ourselves better.From that knowledge, comes the ability to more easily accept and adapt to change, resulting in enhanced well-being in body, mind, heart and spirit. Hence its applicability to almost all chronic conditions.

What approach does yoga therapy take?

Contrary to modern medical science that tries to identify the pathogenic factor (be it a toxic substance, a micro-organism, or metabolic disorder) then eliminate it, Yoga takes a totally different point of view. It holds that if a person is sick there must be a deeper reason behind it – that illness doesn’t arise by chance. It is the result of an imbalance, a disruption in the body-mind complex that creates the condition. Here the symptoms, the pathogenic factors, are not the issue. Yoga believes that the root cause lies somewhere else.
yoga therapy

Naturoville Spa said...

Ayurveda Diet plays a major role in maintenance of a healthy life, Keep this going on please, great job!

Anonymous said...

Great recipe! Can you just explain to me please do I add rest of the spices and greens into mung beans and rice after they cooked for 45min and then cook for another 20min or do I add them after 25 min of cooking mung beans and rice and let them finish all together? Because 1h5min of cooking seams a little too much...