Paal Pongal

Hope you all celebrated Pongal happily with your family and enjoyed the holidays very much. I made this pongal on pongal day, finished pooja, stocked up our car and headed to my hubby dear’s home town to visit my In-Laws. What a memorable trip it was.

We visited the fields in the near by area and came back with lots of fresh veggies harvested right from the farms. The kids had a great time. Can’t wait to try out the dishes from the freshly cut veggies. Here is the Paal Pongal recipe…

You’ll Need:
Rice – 1 cup
Yellow moong dal – 5 tbsp
Jaggery / Vellam – 1 ½ cups – 2 cups
Milk – 5 cups
Ghee / clarified butter – 4 tbsp
Cashewnuts (broken) – 2 tbsp
Raisins – 2 tbsp
Cardamom / elachi - 3
Kesar food color – 2 pinch

In a pan roast the yellow moong dal over a low flame till the raw smell disappears and a nice aroma arises. Wash the rice well. Dissolve the kesar color in little milk. Grate the jaggery and keep it ready.

In a pressure cooker place the washed rice, roasted moong dal along with milk and cook for 4 to 5 whistles. Mash it well with a wooden ladel.

Meanwhile heat a cup of water and add the jaggery and keep mixing it so that it dissolves completely in water. Filter the jagery water to remove the impurities. Heat the filtered jaggery water again and cook over a low flame till the raw smell disappears for about 5 minutes.

Pour this jaggery over the mashed rice and dal and mix well and cook over a low flame till all the flavors merge together.

Heat ghee in a pan and the broken cashews, and raisins and roast them till they become golden in color. Add the cardamom and immediately pour this over the cooking rice. Add the kesar milk to it.

Keep mixing all with a wooden ladle so that they all mash together well and when it comes to a creamy consistency take off from the stove.

Serve this yummy and creamy hot pongal with a dash of little ghee over it.

Note: I used Paagu vellam for making this pongal. Use any other jaggery that you can get your hands on. Though the consistency may vary. Adjust the amount of jaggery to your family’s tastes.

You can also use half water and half milk instead of using milk entirely. You can also omit using the kesar food color.
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