I can eat Pulagam or Venn Pongal anytime, any place. And I don’t need any accompaniments either. Just plain Pulagam or Venn Pongal with some (ok, ok, lots of) ghee.
I look forward to Pongal as prasadam in temple. The taste of pongal cooked on a wood fire is hard to replicate at home, though.
In the past couple of years, I discovered the pleasure of eating Pongal with Avial, thanks to Hotel Ram Ashraya in Matunga, Mumbai. In fact, we look forward to a breakfast here on Sundays, the only day that this combination is served.
- Rice – 1 Cup
- Pesara Pappu/Moong Dal/Green Gram – 2/3 Cup
- Pepper Corns – 8 to 10
- Cumin Seeds – 1 tsp
- Cashew Nuts – 10 or 12
- Ghee – 2 tbsp
- Turmeric – 1/4 tsp
- Salt to Taste
- Over medium heat, roast the moong dal till it is light brown.
- Crush the pepper corn into a rough powder.
- Pressure cook the rice and roasted dal with 3.5 cups of water for 3 whistles or till the rice & dal is completely cooked.
- In a heavy bottomed vessel/kadai/wok, heat the ghee.
- Add the cumin seeds and crushed pepper.
- Saute for about 10 seconds.
- Add the split cashew nuts and fry till the cashew turns light brown.
- Add turmeric powder, salt, and rice-dal mix.
- Mix well.
- Serve hot with coconut chutney.
You get some of the best Venn Pongal (outside of a temple) at the Railway Food Stall on Warangal station. He liberally adds green chillies to it and what I can only guess is oil.
- Chakkara Pongal (Sweet Pongal) (aahaaram.wordpress.com)
- Pongal (soulofspice.wordpress.com)
- Pongal (slideshare.net)
- Pongal Festival (tamilrasigan.wordpress.com)
- Avial (Mixed Vegetable Stew in Curd) (aahaaram.wordpress.com)