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January 16, 2013

Sweet Pongal Recipe In Pot - How To Make Sakkarai Pongal in Paanai(Traditional Method)

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Sakkarai pongal

In this post, let's see how to make sakkarai pongal in a pot/ Pongal paanai. Hope you all had a great pongal celebration yesterday. I too had a good time in my in-laws house and we celebrated very well. I wanted to post our sakkarai pongal recipe in pot ( Pongal paanai) for a long time. This is our traditional method of making sweet pongal for Pongal festival. I think its is the right time to post this recipe along with some pictures of pongal celebration in my house. This year my sweet pongal turned out very tasty , flavourful and soft.. It tasted great even the next day after reheating. 

I’ve given the step by step pictures and video for making pongal traditionally in a pot / venkala paanai. U can do the pongal in pressure cooker or Mann paanai/ clay pot too. The quantity of ingredients I’ve given is the same for both except water quantity. The amount of water may vary for cooking in aluminium or brass pot and the cooking time also differs. In pressure cooker, you can make it fast.. In Tamil Nadu, we get pongal arisi and paagu vellam during this time and we used to buy that for making pongal.

 In bangalore , I buy good quality sona masoori raw rice and I make sure to buy dark colored jaggery to get a nice color of pongal. So the color of pongal may vary depending the color of jaggery you use. The water quantity may also vary depending on the quality of rice. I’ve tried to approximate the water quantity as per the rice varieties i used. Lets see the Tamil nadu traditional method of making sweet pongal in a pot !
Sweet pongal in pot

sweet pongal in pot

1 cup - 250ml 
  • Raw rice/ Sona masoori – 1 cup
  • Yellow Moong dal – 2 tbsp 
  • Raw Milk – 1/2 cup ( Unboiled , fresh milk)
  • Water – 4-5 cups (Water quantity varies as per pot size)
  • Salt – A pinch
  • Jaggery – 1-1.25 cups (based on the sweetness)
  • Ghee – 4 tbsp
  • Cashews and dry grapes– few nos
  • Elachi/ cardamom seeds– 3-4 nos
  • Cloves – 3 nos
  • Edible camphor – A pinch
  • Jaathikai -  A pinch ( take a small piece , roast in ghee and crush it before adding)

  • In a kadai , dry roast moong dal for few minutes till you get a nice aroma and golden brown in color.Mix the rice and roasted dal. Wash , drain the water.
  • Add milk and water to the aluminium or brass vessel/ venkala paanai. When it starts boiling over and after it raises to the rim of the pot and spills a bit, Shout out "Pongalo Pongal". Simmer the flame and add the washed rice, dal mixture & a pinch of salt. 
  • Remove the excess water and keep it in a bowl. Add this water whenever needed. Cover the vessel with a lid and cook the rice in medium flame OR if using pressure cooker, cook for 4-5 whistles till it rice is cooked well.
Sweet pongal in pot
  • In the mean time , grate the jaggery and keep it ready. After rice is cooked well, open the cooker/vessel , mash it well & add the jaggery and mix well till the jaggery melts and allow it to boil in low flame. You can also boil and melt the jaggery in water. Strain the syrup and add to pongal. Add a tbsp of ghee to avoid the pongal sticking to the bottom ..Make sure it doesn’t get burnt..Give a nice boil in low to medium flame. Keep mixing.
  • After the raw smell of jaggery emanates, switch off the flame. Please make sure the pongal has slight moisture content when you switch off the flame. ( i.e it should be slightly watery n mushy. Don’t make it very thick .) This is very important ..
  • Once it cools down , the consistency will be correct else it will  become very hard. If you feel , all the water is absorbed and if it looks dry , add little boiled milk or coconut milk , Mix well and switch off the flame.
sweet pongal in a pot
  • In a frying pan , add a tsp of ghee and roast the cloves & cardamom seeds, jaathikai. Crush it & add to pongal. Mix well. Again heat 3 tbsp of ghee in the pan and roast the cashews, dry grapes till golden brown. Add it to the pongal with ghee. Add a pinch of edible camphor powder. All these ingredients helps to give temple style sweet pongal flavor.
sweet pongal in a pot
  • Mix well before serving.Yummy , flavourful pongal is ready !!
  • Adding milk is optional. U can make only adding water. If you want milk version, add only milk instead of water.
  • Make sure the rice and dal is cooked perfectly( should be mushy) before adding jaggery else rice will be visible and separate.
  • Adding more ghee makes it more rich n tasty.
  • Adding nutmeg & edible camphor is purely optional. But adding them enhances the flavour for sure and gives a temple touch.
Last but not the least , here are some pictures of pongal celebration in our house.

Pongal celebration

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AparnaRajeshkumar said...

beautiful kolam and celebration

Vimitha Durai said...

U had a grand celebration i guess. Belated wishes dear... The pongal looks so tempting

Unknown said...

very nice recipe. I will try this soon.

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Unknown said...

Yummy Pongal....

Rumana Rawat said...

Looks very yummy..

Savi-Ruchi said...

The last picture is a treat to watch! I am missing my home now :)

divyagcp said...

Pongal looks so divine.. Love the earthern pot you have use for serving.. Also I admire the kolams in the last picture... Beautiful!

Unknown said...

Nice spread and love the earthern pots pongal.cute.

Unknown said...

Yummy and pongal wishes to u Chitra

Sudha Sabarish said...

Delicious Sakkarai Pongal.Superb Kolam.

Sangeetha M said...

Seems u had a wonderful Pongal! Sweet Pongal looks so delicious...nicely presented...loved it!

Rashida Shaikh said...

Seems u had a wonderful Pongal!

Suja Manoj said...

Looks divine,yummy pongal

divya said...

looks so gorgeous.

hotpotcooking said...

Delicious pongal

Swathi said...

Delicious pongal

Shabitha Karthikeyan said...

Yummy Pongal !! Loved the celebrations !!!

Saraswathy Balakrishnan said...

Happy Pongal Chit..yummy sweet pongal da

Jeyashris Kitchen said...

Super tempting pongal and nice clicks of the celebratons at your place

Priya Suresh said...

Beautiful pongal celebrations, chatti looks soo cute..Yummy sweet pongal.

Unknown said...

Very festive pictures!!! Pongal looks awesome!!!
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Mahi said...

Pongal looks delicious..thanks for sharing the nice pictures Chitra!

M D said...

Your pongal looks delicious!

Unknown said...

Hai chitra....
Can u pls clarify my doubt d measurement 1 cup means 200 ml or 240 ml?

Chitra said...

Its 200 ml.

Unknown said...

Thank u 4 ur quick reply....