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Thursday, February 18, 2010

pongal

History of Pongal
On the day of Pongal, sweet rice known as 'Pongal' is cooked in a new earthenware pot which is placed where the puja is to be performed. Fresh turmeric and ginger are tied around this pot. Then a delicious concoction of rice, moong dal, jaggery and milk is boiled in the pot on an open fire. According to the ritual, this Pongal rice is allowed to boil and spill over. Once the rice is cooked, it is tempered with cashew nuts and raisins fried in ghee. When the Pongal dish is ready, it is offered to the sun god on a new banana leaf along with other traditional delicacies, like vadas, payasam, etc. Some people go to their plots of land to spray some of the Pongal water on their fields.

Ingredients
» 1 cup Rice
» 1/4 cup Moong dal
» /2- 1 tsp jeera
» 1/2-1 tsp peppercorns
» 1/2 tsp pepper powdered fresh
» A few Cashewnuts broken
» 1/2 cup dessicated Coconut
» A pinch of Turmeric powder
» Ghee

Method
1. Fry the Moongdal a little till you get a light flavour.
2. Mix the dal with the rice, add 2 -3 cups of water (the rice should cook very very soft)
3. Add turmeric powder, coconut, a few peppercorns and a 1-2 tsp of ghee to the rice and pressure cook till done.
4. When done, take a kadai add sufficient of Ghee to it, more the ghee better it tastes, add jeera, pepper corns and cashewnuts.
5. Add the cooked rice mixture, add pepper powder, salt and mix well with the ghee and jeera/cashewnuts.

Ingredients
» Rice 1 Cup
» Moong Dal 1/4 Cup
» Black Pepper Powder to taste
» Zera Powder 1 Tbsp
» Ginger Paste 1 Tsp
» Dry Dinger (Sukku) 1 Tbsp
» Heeng 1 Tsp
» Cashew for garnishing
» Ghee 2 Tbsp
» Water 6 Cups
» Salt to taste

Method
1. Wash rice and dal together and drain nicely.
2. In the Rice cooker heat 1 tbsp ghee.
3. Add rice and dal. Fry till the ghee coats the mixture.
4. Add the rest of the ingredients, except Cashews.
5. Add water. Cover and cook.
6. Keep testing the water level and stir frequently as it has a tendency to stick to the bottom.
7. When rice gets fully mashed garnish with cashews.

Sakkara Pongal
Ingredients
» 2 litres Milk
» 1 1/2 cups Newly harvested Rice
» 1/4 cup Moong Dal
» 15 no. Cashewnuts
» 10 no. Almonds
» 30 no. Kishmis
» 1/4 level teaspoon Nutrieg Powder
» 1 1/2 cup Jaggery (grated)
» 1/4 teaspoon Saffron (crushed)
» 1 teaspoon Cardamom powder
» 2 tablespoons ghee

Method
1. Chop almonds and cashewnuts.
2. Clean kishmis.
3. Pour milk in the earthen pot called 'Pongapani' and place it on fire.
4. When the milk starts boiling add rice and dal, after washing. As soon as the rice and dal are cooked to softness, add jaggery and ghee.
5. Let cook on medium fire for some time and then put in almond and cashewnut bits, saffron, nutrieg and cardamom powders.
6. Now, add the kishmis. Sarkarai Pongal Photo
7. Bring to one or two good boils.



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