This is my 50th post and I am quite happy with this achievement and look forward to sharing many more recipes and learn some new recipes as well. Never did I imagine while browsing over other blogs that I would start one on my own and reach this milestone from the zero. I know that I have a long way to go, many more cuisines to ponder, but still glad that I reached here though it took me some time. I would like to thank my children who would patiently wait before I clicked the pictures of the dishes before they could dig in. So to celebrate this occasion I have chosen rice which is the staple food crop.
If there is a great way to enjoy and celebrate the staple grain Rice in its best way, then I think it is inevitably the sarkarai pongal. May be that is why our forefathers chose rice as the base for making pongal. It is quite easy to make but rather heavy on the tummy considering the ghee that goes in.
- Raw rice – 1 cup
- Yellow moong dal – 3 tbsp
- Powdered jaggery – 2 cups
- Ghee – 100 to 150 gms
- Green cardamoms – 3
- Broken cashew nuts – 2 tbsp
- Raisins – 1 tbsp
- Milk – 4 cups
- Water – ½ cup
- Salt – a pinch
Pick and wash rice. Spread the wet rice over a cloth and let it dry. Heat 2 tsp of ghee in a kadai and add the rice to it. Saute till you get a nice aroma without the rice changing color. Keep aside. Again roast the moong dal with 1 tsp of ghee and keep aside. Roast the broken cashew nuts and raisins till they are golden brown and keep aside.
In a pressure cooker pour the milk and bring it to a boil. Now add the rice and moong dal and cook for 2 to 3 whistles. The rice should be mushy and sticky when cooked. You can also cook the rice in a pot instead of a pressure cooker. In another stove in a pan heat the water and add the jaggery to it. Let it dissolve completely. Strain to remove impurities. Add this jaggery water to the rice and dal mixture. Add the remaining ghee, powdered cardamoms, cashews, raisins, salt and keep mixing it well. Cook till the jaggery gets incorporated with the rice and a nice aroma comes out. What a great way to enjoy rice? Isn’t it.
For a healthier version: you can avoid the ghee and replace it with vanaspati or ground nut oil. Cut back on cashews.
For a rich version: increase the amount of ghee. You can also use coconut milk instead of plain milk and ghee roasted coconut pieces and almonds along with cashews.