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Sunday, January 10, 2016

Theepi Pongali / Sweet Pongal

When I recently complied recipe index, I realized that many simple, common Indian festive dishes have not been posted on my blog yet though this is my 10th year of blogging. The main reason being that I usually don't cook festival dishes in advance for blog's sake since I have to cook them anyway on the festival day. However 'clicking' those dishes during festivals would be the last thing on my mind because of the hectic schedule. I picked the theme of the festival dishes this week to change that as Sankranti / Pongal is around the corner. 
Sweet and savory pongals, the south Indian style thick and creamy rice puddings take the center stage on a Makara Sankranti day in majority of the south Indian households. And they also happen to be the popular 'prasadams' distributed to devotees in temples across the region and 'naivedyam' offered to God at homes. Today's version is the one commonly prepared in our home using sugar and coconut and a favorite of mine.
1/2 cup rice *
2 tbsp. moong dal
1 & 1/4 cup water
1 cup full fat milk
1/4 cup fresh, grated coconut
1/4 tsp. cardamom powder
5 - 6 tbsp. sugar (adjust according to taste)
1 tbsp. ghee
1 tbsp. raisins
1 tbsp. cashew nuts
A pinch of camphor powder (optional)

* Use any south Indian style white rice. I prefer to use extra long grain rice since it can be cooked to a softer / mushy consistency. Do not use Basmati rice.
* Wash rice and moong dal in two exchanges of water and drain. Add water to rice and dal and pressure cook until rice is almost cooked mushy.
If cooking in a sauce pan, try to go with a non stick one if you have one. Add rice, dal and a cup of water and bring it to a boil. Turn down the heat to lowest setting and cook. Keep an eye while the rice is cooking and keep adding water intermittently as needed and keep stirring. Soaking the rice in water for at least a couple of hours prior to cooking will cut down the cooking time. More quantity of water is needed if cooking in a sauce pan.
* Heat ghee in a pan and toast the cashews and raisins until they turn golden and plump respectively. Transfer them to a small bowl. Add the pressure cooked rice - dal mixture to the pan and mash it slightly using the back of a ladle. Then add milk, coconut and sugar to the pan and cook until almost the milk is absorbed. Add the ground cardamom, edible camphor if using and the toasted cashews - raisins to the cooked pongal and stir to combine. Turn off the stove and serve the pongal warm.  

This goes to Blogging marathon #60 under the theme 'Festival of the Month'. Check the link to see what other marathoners are cooking.



Sapana Behl said...

Pongal looks very creamy and tasty Suma.Wow 10th year congrats dear ,great going.

Srividhya Gopalakrishnan said...

Happy Pongal :-) Great clicks

sushma said...

Pongal is around the corner and this is made for sure in my kitchen. Looks yummy

Priya Suresh said...

My favourite pongal, its been a while i prepared this, btw your serving bowl is so pretty and cute.

Kalyani said...

somehow inspite of being miles apart, we both have written almost similar intros (incl the reason) for today's post with the festival series :) how coincidental can that get ?? :-)))

This sweet pongal looks great !!

Pavani N said...

Such a traditional and classic dish for Sankranthi.

rajani said...

There are so many regular recipes that hasnt made its way to the blog. My regular pulao which I make when guests come has never been blogged. You cannot meddle with the camera just when someone steps into your house, can you :-)?

Priya Srinivasan said...

just drooling!!! that is one cute bowl there, loving it totally!!

Chef Mireille said...

I love any kind of rice pudding and this was one of my faves

Sandhya Ramakrishnan said...

Love it! I can eat sweet pongal anytime of the year :)

Varadas Kitchen said...

Love the color and garnish, makes it so festive.

Gayathri Kumar said...

Your pongal looks absolutely delicious. Love your presentation..

Harini-Jaya R said...

I am sure all of us face the dilemma, Suma. Lovely and tasty pongal.

veena krishnakumar said...

Pongal looks very nice and inviting!!