Pongal is one of the traditional four days harvest festival celebrated in Tamil Nadu which falls in the mid of January. It is a thanksgiving occasion to nature and domestic animal which are helpful to farmers in their cultivation process. Chakkarai Pongal is a delicacy mostly made by the farmers from the newly harvest rice. Pongal is cooked using jaggery, ghee, and cashew nuts and is offered to Sun for worshipping.
Traditionally at the festival time Pongal is made in the new mud pot and will be offered to God. In the modern apartment culture, it is not possible for everyone to prepare Pongal in a pot, so pressure cooker Pongal is the most common preparation done in many homes. Here the recipe is given for the pressure cooker Pongal method.
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Ingredients For Sweet Pongal
- Raw Rice – 1 cup
- Moong Dal – 1/4 cup
- Milk – 4 cups
- Jaggery – 2 cup grated
- Cashews – 3 tablespoon
- Raisins – 3 tablespoon
- Cardamom – 5 pcs powdered
- Ghee – 1/4 cup
Dry roast moong dal in a pan for few minutes in medium flame. It is not necessary to roast it until the color of moong dal changes. Once you get the fried moong dal aroma, you can switch off the flame.
Add raw rice and fried moong dal in a bowl and soak this with water for 15 minutes.
After that wash the rice and dal in water and drain it. Now add this in a pressure cooker along with milk and let it come to boil.
Once it boils, cover the pressure cooker using the lid. Allow it to cook for 4 to 5 whistles or for 15 to 20 minutes in low flame.
After its done, off the flame and rest the cooker’s pressure to release by itself. Now, remove the lid and smash the rice using a spatula.
Meanwhile, add the grated jaggery in a pan and add 1/4 cup water to the pan and let it dissolve. Simply let the jaggery to dissolve in water to form a sugar syrup and there is no need to make the syrup in a sticky consistency or string consistency.
Now filter the jaggery syrup to remove impurities in it. Pour the syrup over the cooked rice and dal and mix well.
Take a pan and add ghee in it. First, add cashews to the ghee and fry it in medium flame. When the cashews start to change its color, add raisins to it and fry till the raisins bloat. Switch off the flame once it reaches light golden brown.
Now again keep the cooker in low flame and add the fried cashews and raisins in the cooked rice and dal along with the ghee. cardamom powder, ghee and mix well.
Add cardamom powder, rest of the ghee and stir Pongal for 5 minutes so that all the flavors gets united. Once everything mixes well, switch off the flame and serve Sakkarai Pongal hot.
- You can substitute milk with water or you can add 2 cups of milk and 2 cups of water for cooking rice and dal.
- If you wish, you can add chopped and fried coconut pieces in the Pongal.
- The color of the Pongal differs based on the jaggery color you are using.
- After cooling down, Pongal gets thick, so switch off the flame accordingly.