Don’t you think we Indians have managed to stay united in spite of lots of diversities?? And you won’t disagree if I say a food plays major role to keep us connected, as any good friendships or relationship can be built over a good taste of food. Every corner of the country has its own special food with its own cooking style. if you want to know more about east indian food then do visit the site bongocook.com But as we all love some variations in our food, we often try different recipes of the same food which we used to eat or we try completely different food which give us different level of satisfaction. One interesting fact about indian food is that in many places he same food is known by different name with slightly different cooking method.
One such example is khichdi. Who doesn’t like to eat khichdi? Khichdi holds very important place in Indian household, as it is easy to cook still so delicious in taste. Khichdi is a dish made up of combination of lentils and rice. In India you will find two types of people, one type is who will choose to eat khichdi when they want to eat something light and other type of people who choose to eat khichdi as a part of their celebration. The second type of people are the one which you will find in southern part of India. And this type of khichdi is known as pongal.
Pongal is a type of khichdi which is being prepared on the festival of pongal. And pongal is a festival of harvesting celebrated by the people of Tamilnadu.There are two types of pongal one is ven pongal which is used to be salty in taste and other is sakkarai pongal which is used to be sweet. The word pongal means bubbling up. In tamil culture every new beginning is celebrated by bubbling up of milk, as bubbling up is believed to be very auspicious. They believe, bubbling up of milk brings prosperity and abundance. So pongal being the harvesting festival they bubbling up milk over new rice and lentils.
As mentioned earlier the salty pongal known as ven pongal is made up of moong lentils, rice and tempered by ghee, pepper, cumin seeds, ginger, curry leaves and cashew nuts. And shakkar pongal is made up of same moong lentils, rice and milk, jiggery and tempered by ghee and nuts. Apart from the pongal festival, you will find these pongal as prasadam in many temples in tamilnadu. And I am sure once you eat this pongal, it will become your favourite type of khichdi.
Now let’s see how the sweet pongal(SHAKKRAI PONGAL) is being made.
RICE: 1/2 CUPS
JAGGERY POWDER: 1.5CUPS
CARDEMOM WDER: 1tsp
CASHWE NUTS AND RAISINS: FEW
1) Take 1/2 cup of rice and 1/2 cup of moong lentil and roast it. Roast it till moong lentils become aromatic. Keep on stirring in between.
2) Then take them in strainer and wash it thoroughly 3-4 times.
3) After washing take lentils and rice in cooker and add 2cups of milk and 1 cup of water.
4) And boil it on medium flame for 6-7 whistles.
5) The rice and the lentils, both should be mushy. Its consistency should be like khichdi.
B) JAGGERY SYRUP
1) Heat 1/2 cup of water. Once it starts boiling add 1.5 cups of jiggery powder in that. And heat the solution till jaggery dissolve completely in water. Once it gets dissolved, strain this mixture to remove any impurities and add it in to the prepared pongal.
1) Take 3 tsp of ghee in one small kadhai.
2) Add 1/2 tsp of cardamom powder
3) Add few raisins and cashewnuts
4) Heat them till they become golden brown, by doing so the raisins will become blump.
5)Add this mixture in cooked mixture of rice and lentils.
Pongal is ready to serve.
1) You can use water to boil rice and lentils in place of milk
2) You can use sugar syrup in place of jiggery
3) In place of rice you can use dalia or oats.
4) You can prepare it different types of lentils to make it healthier.
5) You can add some flavor of any fruits of your choice.
Any combination of lentil and rice will always be undoubtedly healthy as you will get all your required proportion of proteins and carbohydrates. Let’s see how sweet pongal will contribute for your good health.
1)Moong lentil: The fibre resent in yellow moong dal prevents the deposition of bad cholesterol in the arteries which promotes a healthy heart in turn. Monng dal is also packed with nutrients like zink, protein and iron which helps to maintain the elasticity of the skin and keep it moist. Fiber, potassium and magnesium from moongg dal help to regulate blood pressure.
2) Rice: Rice is a great source of carbohydrates, which is important source of energy for our body. Also rice provides you good source of protein and B vitamins.
3 ) Jaggery. Jaggery is made in iron vessel and so it is rich source of iron, it provides about 1mg of iron from ¼ cup.It is a very good replacement of sugar as it is a natural sweetener. It doesn’t cause any chronic disease like sugar, though should be used in optimum amount. Apart form iron, jaggery will also provide you calcium and phosphorus which helps you to keep your bones and teeth strong.
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