You can make kitchari in many ways – in a slow over overnight, in a rice cooker, using a pressure cooker, in a thermos too indeed, in a normal manner on the stove top in a saucepan. You can even steam it.
Yes, Kitchari can be made by steaming. Reading Vasant Lad’s book on Ayurveda for Self Healing this morning, I thought I might make some kitchari as we are eating very lightly for a week. The results are amazing – buttery and divine.
It takes a while to cook, so put it on early, while you are pottering around, doing yoga or catching up on ironing. It can be made in your Rice Cooker if it has a steam setting. Using the rice cooker that I have, it takes 2.5 cups water (more, if you like a soft, moist kitchari) and I cook it for 2 hours. Ponni rice is another alternative to Sona Masori (both available at Indian groceries), or use any commonly available short grain rice or use basmati.
You can browse all of our Kitchari recipes here, and our Rice recipes. Explore our Ayurvedic recipes. Our Indian recipes are here and our Indian Essentials here. Or take some time to explore our Mid Autumn recipes.
Buttery Steamed Kitchari
This kitchari is especially good for Vata dosha.
This amount will serve about 3 medium appetites, more if serving with a few accompaniments
Although this recipe steams the kitchari, it can be cooked using any other method.
Kitchari is traditionally made with short grained rice – Ayurveda prefers basmati as being more digestible, but short grained rice gives a better result.
0.5 cup short grained rice such as soma masouri, or use basmati
1/4 cup yellow split mung dal
2.5 – 3 cups water
1 tspn sea salt (or less of other salts)
1 – 2 Tblspn ghee
1 tspn black mustard seeds
1/2 tspn cumin seeds
2 pinches hing/asafoetida
1/4 tspn turmeric
Wash the rice and dal to remove dust and excess starch. Soak in water to cover for an hour or more.
Drain the rice and dal.
Combine the water, half of the ghee and the rice and dal in a heatproof bowl or dish with a lid.
If no lid is available, fashion one with some foil and secure tightly.
Add water to a large steamer pan and set up your steaming tier or trivet. Bring the water in the steamer to the boil. Reduce heat to low and place the covered bowl into the steamer. Cover the steaming pan.
Cook the rice slowly for 90 – 120 minutes. By this time the rice and mung should be cooked well, and be soft. It may still feel a little wet, but the additional water will soon be absorbed as you do the next steps.
Remove the pan from the heat, remove the bowl from the pan and uncover. Add the turmeric and salt.
Now heat the remaining ghee in a pan and add the mustard seeds. Swirl them around in the hot ghee, allowing them to pop. Add the cumin seeds and hing. After 15 or so seconds, pour the ghee and spices into the kitchadi, and fluff gently with a fork.
Enjoy! Give thanks for the rice, the dal, the ghee, the spices, our body and its marvelous workings, our life, Mother Earth and the wonderful incomprehensible Universe, our home.