How to cook Millets perfectly in pressure cooker without any pre soaking. You can follow this method to cook either a single variety of millet or a mix of millets too. You can also follow this method to cook them in an electric rice cooker or microwave.
Millets are ancient grains that makes a great gluten free option. As they release the insulin slowly into the blood over a period of time unlike immediately like rice and easy to digest as well at the same time, millets are recommended to diabetic people as an alternative to rice.
I personally love millets and love making adai and enjoy eating pongal. Foxtail millet is always my choice to replace rice for lunch. But I don’t like having to pre soak it for 15-20 mins prior to cooking which I always manage to forget.
I came to know of this hack from my husband’s aunt when she visited us. She is a diabetic and doesn’t take rice. I had only foxtail millet at hand and I was surprised when she cooked it for both of us within few minutes without bothering to pre soak it.
She used my clay pot and I must say anything cooked in a clay pot will taste much better always than cooked in any other vessel not to mention the texture and consistency. But it was open cooking and I prefer my cooking to be supervision free.
I especially hate having to open the lid and taking a sneak peak to check if the food is cooked or not and dislike looking at the clock to check on time. But on the other hand, I like counting and keeping a count of the number of whistles is no sweat.
Of all the millets, it is said that, ragi (finger millet) and thinai (foxtail millet) are the most thirsty fellows and that is one of the reason why foxtail millet is pre soaked for some time prior to cooking. All the millets are best eaten when they hot or warm after cooking.
As the millets cool they also tend to dry out and it will be very difficult to even swallow if the cooked millets get cold. However, you can always sprinkle some water over them and reheat it in a microwave or steam for some time.
As I get cleaned up millets from the shop from where I buy regularly, I don’t wash it. But if the millets you use have any dirt, wash it well and then spread it on a clean cloth to dry it out completely before using it.
The water used will of course depend on the consistency and the choice of our recipe.
– If you are cooking millets as a replacement for rice in lunch or to make pulao, and prefer the grains to be separate, the ratio of millet to water is 1:2
– If you want the millets to be soft and not grainy or using them to make khichdi, the ratio is 1:3
– If you are going to make pongal or a thick porridge, then the ratio is 1:4
I have cooked with single millet and a mix of 3 to 4 millets without pre soaking both in pressure cooker and in electric rice cooker and every time they came out perfect without an issue.
You can also cook in an open pan or in a microwave. If using microwave, use a microwave safe bowl, preferably a pyrex dish and cover the bowl partly with a lid while cooking. In both open pan and microwave, it should take 20 – 25 mins to cook 1 cup of millet.
How to cook Millets perfectly in Pressure Cooker:
- Millets (any variety) - 1/2 cup
- Salt - 1 pinch (optional)
- Water - 1 cup to 1-1/4 cups
- I used Foxtail millet (thinai or kangni). You can use any variety of millet or a mix of millets too.
- Heat a pan and dry roast the millet for 1-2 min till it feels hot to your touch and fragrant.
- Roast over low flame without changing its color. The roasting time will increase if the quantity of the millets increase.
- Transfer it to a pressure cooker. You can roast the millet directly in the pressure cooker itself instead of using a pan.
- Add water, salt (if using), mix well, close the lid and cook over medium flame for 3 whistles.
- After the pressure is released, open the lid and fluff with a fork.
- Serve hot or warm.
- Use 1 cup water, if you want the grains to be separate else use 1-1/4 cups water (which I do), if you want the millets to be soft and easy to swallow.