Kitchari is a mixture of rice and lentils, usually cooked with just a few spices. It’s the height of comfort for most Indians, and what most of the women in my family get when everyone’s palate needs a rest. It’s a vote for a simpler meal, the equivalent of a pleasant bike ride down a winding country road. In our family (the youngest is only one), it is one of the few meals that we can put in the center of the table and eat together; as a cook, that’s the ultimate comfort.
Tomato and turmeric kitchari
People often cook Kitchari to a consistency similar to a risotto, but I like mine with separate and individual grains. You will need a wide skillet with a tight-fitting lid (I use a 28cm one). Serve with cold yogurt and a nice lime pickle.
Homework 10 minutes
Cook 40 min
It serves Bedroom
300g basmati rice
3 tablespoons rapeseed oil
1 large brown onion, peeled and thinly sliced
400 g medium vine tomatoes, In rooms
120 g dry brown lentils
1½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1½ teaspoon fine sea salt
⅓ teaspoon ground black pepper
Wash the rice under cold running water until the water runs clear, then place in a bowl, cover with cold water, and set aside.
Put the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat and, once hot, add the onion and fry, stirring regularly in the pan, for about 10 minutes, until soft and caramelized. Add the tomatoes, lentils and 200 ml of water and bring to a boil. Open the lid, lower the heat and simmer, stirring once or twice, for 15-20 minutes, until the liquid has evaporated. (This step is important because it ensures that your rice does not get soggy.) Add the spices, salt, and pepper, and stir again.
Now drain the rice very well and pour it into the pot with 450ml of water. Stir, bring to a boil, cover again, lower the heat and cook for 15 minutes. After this time, turn off the heat and let it rest, still well covered, for 10 minutes, before serving with a tablespoon of cold yogurt and a little lime pickle.