You know that feeling you get on vacation when you kinda realize that all the stuff that you usually pack your day and life with… the to do list, the work responsibilities, the home responsibilities, the stuff you wish you’d done last year, the things you’re planning for next year, and next month, the social media, news, TV noise and overwhelming connection to what it means to survive in our crazy world these days… has just kinda stopped?

That feeling of lightness that comes from knowing that just for now, even if only for a few days or a week, you can put all of that stuff down, ignore it if you will, and enjoy the physical, mental and emotional sensation of… lightness?

That’s kitchari.

In reality kitchari is a simple dish of mung dhal and basmati rice. It’s traditionally made and eaten during times when your mind and body need a little simple nurturing (like that vacation). It’s an easy to digest, complete protein that satisfies while at the same time giving your body exactly what it needs. Yeah, ya know what…? Kitchari well and truly is love.

And that’s the way it’s always felt for me when I’ve made and enjoyed it. It’s the Ayurvedic “chicken soup” that comes exactly how you need it, dry with a bit of a bite, “tarted up” with veggies or soft and soupy to find its way into the spots where the discomfort hides. Kitchari soothes what needs soothing and was designed to give your mind and body the break that you probably didn’t know you needed.

Ayurveda recommends that at least a couple times a year (in spring and fall), you do just that. Take time out to give your body-mind a break. A simple kitchari cleanse (a few days or more of eating JUST kitchari) can usually do the trick.

So why not make some today? Here’s a recipe to show you how!

Kitchari from Jody Vasallo

Image: Jody Vasallo

Simple Kitchari

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup moong dal/moong dhal, split yellow lentils (NOT the whole green ones)
  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 3 cups water (if you want it more moist/soupy, use more water)
  • 3 tablespoons of ghee
  • 1 tsp Mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds

Optional:

  • 1 inch piece of fresh ginger (root), peeled, chopped up well
  • 1⁄4 tsp of turmeric
  • Your choice of vegetables for serving (or adding in while cooking)

Preparation:
Wash and strain the mung dhal and the rice. Then heat the ghee gently in a pot then add spices. Once mustard seeds begin to pop (like popcorn) add optional ingredients along with the rice and dhal mixture. Sauté for 2-3 minutes then add water. Stir. Cover. Turn on low heat and cook until all water is absorbed. Serve with ghee and you can add a little salt.

If you need or want a little visual support, check out this video of ME making kitchari!

If you’re looking to take this cleanse thing a little further, why not join me for a FREE online 7 Day seasonal cleanse! You’ll get 7 days of emails in your inbox with guidance, instructions, inspiration, love and support from an online community of hundreds of other folks just like you who have made the bold decision to “clean up their act”. Program starts Oct 15th. More details here!

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