Sweet pongal or sakkarai pongal is my favorite. It is a traditional recipe made for the famous pongal festival celebrated in Tamilnadu. Sweet pongal is traditionally made with the brass pot on wood fire. But it can be made in pressure cooker too. That also equally tastes good. To me, Amma makes the best sakkarai pongal and I haven’t tasted anything better than hers. She used to make sakkarai pongal not only for pongal festival.But for every Friday’s and offered to God when we were kids .
- Raw rice - ½ cup
- Moong dal - 1 to 1.5 tbsp
- Jaggery - ½ cup
- Salt - a pinch
- Water - 2.5 cups
- Cashews - 1 tbsp
- Raisins - 1 tbsp
- Cardamom powder - ¼ tsp
- Edible camphor - a tiny pinch
- Ghee - 4 tsp
- Measure rice, moong dal and jaggery using a measuring cup and keep it ready. Heat a tadka pan with ghee and add cashews and raisins. Fry the cashews until golden brown and raisins fluff up. Set this aside.
- Heat jaggery in a sauce pan with ½ cup of water until it dissolves completely. Strain the jaggery water in another vessel to remove impurities. Keep aside.
- Heat a small pressure cooker with a tbsp of ghee and roast the moong dal for 3 minutes. Then wash the raw rice well and add it to the cooker. Mix well and add required amount of water. Bring it to a boil and pressure cook it for 4 whistles in medium flame.
- Once pressure releases, open the cooker and mash it well with a ladde. Once mashed well, add jaggery water to it and mix well. Switch on the stove and place the pressure cooker over it. Cook everything in a medium flame for 5 minutes.
- While cooking, add 1 tbsp of ghee, salt, cardamom powder and edible camphor. Add milk or warm water if the pongal is getting too dry. Once everything comes together and the pongal is slightly thick add fried cashews and raisins. Mix well with the pongal and switch off the flame once done.
- Use pagu vellam or urundai vellam to get the dark color of pongal as the color of the depends on the jaggery variety used.
- You can add 3 tbsp of moong dal for 1/2 cup of raw rice. I personally don’t prefer more amount of moong dal in sweet pongal. So I have added less amount.
- The quantity of water depends on the age of raw rice. Old rice requires more amount of water than new rice.
- Don’t add edible camphor more than a tiny pinch which will spoil the taste of pongal.
- Pongal gets thicken with time so add milk while serving.