As well as being super easy to digest, kitchari offers a versatile base to experiment with a whole host of toppings all while drawing inspiration from seasonal veg. Spring is the perfect time to start enjoying all those fresh and crunchy shoots that are starting to appear — after many months of root vegetables, it's nice to see the greens starting to come through! I decided to give my usual kitchari a South-East Asian twist with toasted sesame seed oil, tamari and plenty of ginger.

If you’re a big eater, increase the kitchari base from a ⅓ cup of dal and rice to half cup.



Serves 2

For the kitchari base:

½ cup/90g yellow mung dal*
⅓ cup/60g white basmati rice**
1 tbsp ghee (or coconut oil) ***
2 cloves
1 bay leaf
2½ cups (625ml) water or more
¼ tsp turmeric
½ tsp hing/asafoetida (optional)
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper

For the vegetable topping:

200g broccoli (1 small head), sliced into small florets
6 baby sweetcorn, sliced into quarters lengthways
1-2 tbsp ghee/coconut oil
½ tsp mustard seeds
½ tsp turmeric
½ tsp fennel seeds
¼ tsp coriander
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh ginger
2 tbsp tamari
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 tbsp jaggery/maple syrup
Good grind of black pepper


  1. Rinse the mung dal and rice until the water runs clear.

  2. Add to a pot with the water, bay, turmeric, hing, ghee and cloves, and bring to the boil.

  3. Reduce to a gentle simmer and cook, lid on, for 30 minutes.

  4. Season with the salt and pepper and set aside.

    When your kitchari base is approximately 10 minutes from being ready:

  5. Heat the ghee in a pan on medium-high heat and add the mustard seeds. As soon as they begin to splutter, add the rest of the spices and sauté for a minute. Add the tamari, sesame oil, jaggery, chopped vegetables and a splash of water.

  6. Cover with a lid and allow the vegetables to steam in the sauce until tender, being careful not to allow it to catch/dry out.

  7. Serve on top of the plated kitchari or mix straight into the kitchari for an easy bowl of comfort food, and season with freshly ground black pepper.

East by West tip: For entertaining serving flair, try topping with a sprinkling of black sesame seeds and finely sliced spring onions.