Gentle Morning Kitchari from Power Plates

Gentle Morning Kitchari from Power Plates by Gena Hamshaw (vegan and gluten-free)

Gentle Morning Kitchari from Power Plates by Gena Hamshaw (vegan and gluten-free)I first met Gena Hamshaw at Vida Vegan Con, when she moderated a panel that I sat on. She was organized, thoughtful and friendly—someone I wanted to get to know better. I saw Gena a few times in New York City, and was thrilled to learn that she was going to work at Food52 as the vegan blogger/recipe developer. That is a big deal! Her recipes are healthful and delicious, and altogether very appealing and cartable. Gena is detail oriented, so her recipes work for everyone!

I am very impressed with Gena’s new cookbook Power Plates, a wonderful follow-up to Food52 Vegan. This gorgeous hardcover book made me want to run into my kitchen and start cooking. Gena’s delicious recipes are focused on the art of crafting complete, balanced meals that deliver sustained energy and nourishment, and they just happen to be vegan.

Every one of the 100 recipes in Power Plates contains the key macronutrients of healthy fats, complex carbohydrates, and proteins, which together make for a complete meal. The book contains mouthwatering recipes for meals such as Smoky Red Lentil Stew with Chard and Falafel Bowls with Freekah and Cauliflower. Photographs accompany each recipe, showing how Gena’s simple techniques and fresh ingredients yield delicious meals. Additional tips and tricks for taking food on the go, and for cooking ahead on the weekend for quick weekday lunches and dinners, are included in the book.

Power Plates by Gena Hamshaw

Gentle Morning Kitchari from Power Plates by Gena Hamshaw (vegan and gluten-free)

Gentle Morning Kitchari

Gena Hamshaw
If I could eat one thing for breakfast every day, it might be kitchari, a gently spiced rice and lentil dish that holds a cherished place in Indian cooking. Also known as khichdi, the dish varies from region to region, but it’s nearly always a combination of basmati rice and dal (dried split peas or lentils, which can be found at Indian grocers or well-stocked health foods stores). White basmati or long-grain rice will yield the best results, but if you don’t have either on hand, quinoa is a good substitute.
Course Breakfast
Cuisine Indian
Servings 6 servings


  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoons mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 white or yellow onion, diced
  • 3 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated or minced fresh ginger, or 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 3/4 cup (140 g) white basmati or jasmine rice, rinsed
  • 1 cup 200 g dried moong dal, toor dal, urad dal, or red lentils
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 cups (950 ml) low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 cups (475 ml) water

Optional Toppings

  • Lemon wedges, chopped fresh cilantro, melted coconut oil for drizzling


  • Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. When the oil is shimmering, add the mustard and cumin seeds and cook, stirring constantly, until the seeds begin to pop, about 2 minutes. Add the onion, carrots, and ginger and sauté for about 5 minutes, until the onion is tender and translucent.
  • Stir in the rice, dal, turmeric, cloves, salt, pepper, broth, and water and bring to a boil over high heat. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove the lid, stir well, and then simmer, uncovered, for 5 to 10 minutes, until the texture resembles porridge (for a soupier texture, decrease the cooking time, and for a thicker texture, cook it a bit longer). Taste and adjust the seasonings if desired. Serve with your toppings of choice.


Reprinted with permission from Power Plates, copyright © 2018 by Gena Hamshaw. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.
Photographs copyright © 2018 by Ashley McLaughlin
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