Pongal delicacies 2020: Sakara Pongal, Kuttu, Ellu Urundai
Happy Pongal 2020: Here are some traditional recipes for you to enjoy with your near and dear ones this Pongal, which extends over four days.Updated: Jan 16, 2020 13:22 IST
Divya Hasnani has been living in Chennai for the last 22 years, and if there’s one thing that has made Divya fall in love with the city, it is the festival of Pongal. “ Every year, for the last twenty two years now, we celebrate Pongal, just like any other ordinary family from Chennai,” she says. “The first day of Pongal is to celebrate the spirit of new, and discard old unwanted items in your house. So the first day, we too, burn wooden chairs, or anything that is unwanted. Second day, we make sweet Pongal, which is then offered to Sun God. Third day is about worshipping cows, so we do that and the final day is meeting family and friends, and celebrating the festival with them,” she says.
While every household celebrating the festival has a very different way of making the festival’s signature dish – sweet Pongal, the basic ingredients – rice, jaggery and clarified butter (ghee). “One most important delicacy is rice made in raw sugar and desi ghee – this is served as prashad in temples. People decorate their cows, feed them prashad and worship them. Now, in hotels you can find the rice and sugar dish spiced with elaichi, coconut, nuts or other flavourings,” says chef Rakesh Sethi.
The theme of university in diversity reverberates through the four day festival. Another homemaker, Anupama Narayna, follows her mother’s recipe of making Til Ka Laddoo and Mixed vegetable curry – two common dishes made in her household in Hyderabad. Yet Anupama insists, there is a big difference in the taste, as compared to he mother’s cooking. “There is a big difference in the tastes of dishes made by mother and me. The simple reason is the usage of amounts of ingredients we use to make our dishes. For instance, I tend to use lesser ghee than her, when I am making Laddoos. I tned to add more green chillies than her when I am making the mix veg curry,” she says. Here are some recipes:
Sweet Pongal or Sakkara Pongal :
Ingredients: Two cups of sona masuri rice, 1/4 cup moong dal(yellow lentils), 250 gms jaggery syrup and cardamom powder
Water for cooking rice and 1 cup of milk(optional)
In a pressure cooker add soaked rice n dal together and pressure cook for 2 whistles adding the cardamom powder. When the pressure released check to see the rice is evenly cooked. Add 1 cup of milk as it gives an extra flavor and cook on low flame till milk is mixed well. Now add jaggery syrup n boil till it gets dissolve completely with the cooked rice.
When it gets dry take a small pan and heat pure ghee adding cashew nuts frying well. Add this to ready pongal with raisins n mix well.
Kottu recipe ( Mix Vegetable ) :
Ingredients: 5 cups of mix vegetables like egg plant , broad beans , carrots, potato , ash gourd (one cup each), onions, chopped tomatoes, turmeric powder, red chillies and water.
Saute one onion in a pressure cooker. Add all the veggies along with salt, tomato, turmeric powder, red chillies and water . Pressure cook for 2-3 whistles.
When the pressure released, check if all the veggies are cooked properly. Now, add cup of grounded coconut to it.
Finally, take a small pan, add to low heated oil, mustard seeds , curry leaves , hing and mix it to with veggies.
Best served with boiled rice.
Til Ke Laddoo
500 gms Til, 450 gms jiggery and 2tsp ghee
Take the 500gms of til and, wash it and dry. Then, take a pan, and dry roast til in it, till it takes a light brown colour. Keep it aside.
Take the same pan, put ghee in it, and after the ghee has melted, put grated jiggery and stir it well, till it becomes and bubble. Switch off the flame, and put the roasted til with the mix, and then mix it well. After allowing it cool down for a few minutes, take the mixture on a plate and start making laddoos with your hands.
If the mixture gets hard, put them on a pan for about a minute.