Monday, January 14, 2013

Khara Pongal/ Savory Rice dish

Happy Sankranthi everyone. Hope all of you had good celebration. Sankranthi is a harvest festival in India. And usually celebrated exchanging of Sweets made of Sesame seeds, Sugar Candies, Sugar Cane sticks and fruits. The idea was to distribute sweets to spread the sweetness in the community. Back in Bangalore my mom would prepare many plates of all the delicacies and send us to distribute to neighbors and friends. I would even take smaller packets to school to distribute to all my friends. Her "Tilgul" mixture is a classic! 

Pongal is something that my mom learnt in Bangalore. The name Pongal means dish made by boiling milk and rice. Fresh harvest rice would be used to make sweet or savory dish to enjoy during this festival. Today I made savory version of Pongal. By the way Khara means "Spicy" in Kannada. My previous attempts were just so so and I wasn't too pleased with it, coz it was more or like Khichdi. I was telling that to my little sister and she gave me her version of Khara Pongal. It turned out really delicious. Kiddos wanted to eat only that (without the nuts ofcourse!!) It was all yummy goodness. 

Prep Time : 5 min | Cooking Time : 15 min | Serves : 6


Rice - 1 Cup
Moong Dal / Yellow split peas - 3/4 Cup
Ghee - 2 tsp.
Cashew nuts - handful
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp.
Jeera/ Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp.
Hing/ Asefoetida - 1/4 tsp.
Green Chilies - 4 finely chopped
Ginger - Small piece - sliced in thin sticks
Curry / Kadipatta leaves - few
Dessicated Coconut - 1/4 cup
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp.
Pepper powder - Crushed - 1/2 tsp.
Salt - 2 tsp.
Water - 3 Cups
Milk - 1 Cup

Method of Preparation :

~ Wash rice and daal thoroughly. Fill with water and keep it aside to soak.
~ In a wide cooker, heat ghee or oil and roast cashew nuts. Keep it aside once done.
~ In the same pan, add Mustard and Cumin seeds. 
~ Once it crackles, add Hing, Green Chilies, Ginger and Curry leaves. Fry for few seconds.
~  Add washed Moong Dal and Rice. Fry for a minute.
~ Add water, coconut, salt and turmeric powder.
~ Cover and pressure cook for three or four whistles.
~ Once the pressure cooker is cooled down, take out and garnish with pepper powder and roasted cashews.
~ Your one pot meal is ready to be served!

Sending this to ongoing Bon Vivant #11 - Healthy Appetite
and Vardhini's New U,
Preeti's Foodabulous


  1. Delicious and mouthwatering khara pongal.

  2. Very traditional and delicious pongal.

  3. Interesting variation on the traditional tamil nadu Pongal. Adding coconut and green chillies - that's new to me. Also, what is Tilgul?

    1. Hey Reana, this could be Kannadiga's way of Pongal, coz I have eaten at many places in Bengaluru with coconut in it. Try it this way and tell me if you like it better. :)
      Tilgul - Til is sesame and Gul is Jaggery.. My mom makes fresh mix of these two main ingredients for Sankranthi and adds many more stuff. I have to get that recipe from her to make my own. Will send you that soon.

  4. Khara pongal looks delicious. Love it.

  5. Awesome recipe thanks for sharing this with my event...
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  6. yummy pongal.happy to follow you.check my space when you have time.


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