Ven Pongal / Khara Pongal served with White Coconut Chutney & Sambar is my kind of Weekend Brunch. What is yours?
WHAT IS VEN PONGAL?
Khara Pongal – Ven Pongal – Ghee Pongal is a savory Rice & Lentil dish, prepared as an offering to God, during the harvest festival of Pongal in Tamil Nadu.
This easy Pongal recipe is enjoyed as a comfort One Pot meal all through the year. It is often served as a breakfast along with chutneys and Sambar, but trust me – Khara Pongal is great to be enjoyed at Lunch/ Dinner time too.
A lot of people mistake Pongal for Khichidi, but let me clarify they are two different dishes with similar ingredients.
TOP TIPS TO MAKE KHARA PONGAL
Ven Pongal is best made in a Pressure cooker or in an Instant Pot. It can also be made in a Rice Cooker / Open Pot but cooking times will vary.
Cooking this recipe fresh and enjoying it hot is suggested. However Pongal can always be reheated, if you have any leftovers.
Using Ghee is highly recommended for this recipe and hence this dish also known as Ghee Pongal in restaurants.
Adding vegetables like carrots, peas & green beans is always a great option, but it is best enjoyed as it is with accompaniments.
WHAT IS PONGAL?
Spending my childhood in Mumbai, the festival of Pongal was merely a name that I had heard from Amma. She would prepare Ven Pongal and Sakkarai Pongal on this occasion. And the day after Pongal celebrations is Kannu Pongal. I remember, Amma would wake me up early in the morning to follow a ritual of Kannu Pidi and have a shower immediately after this. No food was actually allowed to be had in between this. Subbu’s Kitchen has a beautiful post elaborating this tradition.
Well time flew, And we moved to the city of Chennai after a few years. This festival Pongal had a whole new dimension. PONGAL is a 4 days longwith all the pompous. This festival is celebrated on the 14th of January every year, dedicated to the Sun God.
Makar Sankranti festival is also celebrated on the same day as Pongal, across various parts of India.
As years passed by, Khara Pongal is a regular affair for brunch at home. It is paired along with White Coconut Chutney and Sambar. Vegetable Gotsu also makes it an exciting combination for Pongal. For variation, you could try with some Red Bell Pepper Chutney, Coconut Curryleaves Chutney , Onion Tomato Mint Chutney
With a lot of Trial and Errors, here’s my perfect recipe to Amma’s Ven Pongal Recipe.
VEN PONGAL RECIPE BELOW
- 1 Cup Rice ** I have used Sona Masoori Rice
- 1/4 Moong Dal
- 1/4 Tsp Asafoetida
- 1 "inch ginger finely grated
- Salt to Taste
- 4 Cups of Water
- 1 Tsp Ghee
- 2 Tbsp Ghee
- 8- 10 Curry Leaves
- 1 Tsp Cumin Seeds
- 1 Tsp Black Pepper
- 8 Cashewnuts broken into 2 pieces
Dry Roast Moong Dal in a pan until the color begins to change slightly and its fragrant.Set it aside. Once its cools down, wash it along with rice.
Heat Ghee in the Pressure Cooker Pan. Add Ginger and Asafoetida and saute for one minute. Add the washed rice and moong dal to the pan along with 4 cups of water.
Cook for about 15 minutes.
Once the steam is released, open the lid and season with salt.
For Tempering, Heat Ghee in a small pan, add Black Pepper. Once they begin to crackle, turn off the flame. Add Cumin Seeds, curry leaves followed by the addition of Cashewnuts. Fry until the Cashewnuts turn light brown. Add the tempering to the prepared Ven Pongal and give it a good mix.
Serve Ven Pongal / Khara Pongal hot with Coconut Chutney and Sambar