Yellow Mung Dal

October 1, 2010
Recipe of the Month Kitchari Barbara Sinclair Lentils

A hearty, nourishing and easily digestible dish that helps keep you calm and healthy during the seasonal change. This Yellow Mung Dal Recipe is a particularly Vata-pacifying but also good for all three doshas.

Yellow Mung Dal Kitchari Recipe for Four

  • 1 cup basmati rice (white or brown)
  • 1/2 cup yellow split mung dal (or red lentils)
  • 3 T ghee (clarified butter–find it on the shelf in the Indian food section of any grocery or health food store)
  • 1 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 pinches hing (also known as Asafoetida)
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 cups water
  • 2″ piece Kombu (optional)

Serves 4.

Wash the rice and mung dal well. If you have time, let the mung dal soak for a few hours before cooking, as it helps with digestibility. I also soak the rice for several hours if it’s brown rice. Adding a piece of kombu to the soak water helps even more.

In a saucepan over medium heat, heat the ghee and add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and hing. Stir a moment until the seeds pop. Be watchful as ghee can burn easily.

Add the rice, mung dal, turmeric and salt and stir until well blended with the spices.

Add the water and bring to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes, uncovered, stirring occasionally.

Turn down the heat to low and cover, leaving the lid slightly ajar. Cook until tender 25-35 minutes. Keep an eye on the Kitchari and add more water if necessary.

Here are some easy additions to mix it up a little:

  • A quarter cup of chopped cilantro stirred in towards the end of cooking.
  • Shredded, unsweetened coconut
  • Cinnamon bark
  • Cardamom pods, peppercorns, and/or cloves, added with the other spices
  • Fresh ginger
  • Bay leaves

This recipe was adapted from Ayurvedic Cooking for Self-Healing by Usha Lad and Dr. Vasant Lad.

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