Sweet pongal is a mixture of rice, moong dal and brown sugar with generous amounts of clarified butter/ghee. From time immemorial this pongal has been served in Hindu temples as an offering to God. This can be made for a quick dessert and it tastes best when served warm with a dollop of ghee on top. This sweet pongal recipe from Meenakshi Ammal’s “Cook and See” part 1 has nutmeg and saffron which make a delightful addition to this yummy pongal.
1 cup rice
1/2 cup moong dal
1 cup milk
1 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon raisins
1/4 cup grated coconut ( optional, I didn’t use)
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg powder
1/2 teaspoon powdered cardamom
4 strands of saffron soaked in warm milk
1/4 cup ghee
1. Dry roast moong dal in a pan for 5 to 7minutes on medium flame.
2. Clean and wash rice along with roasted moong dal.
3. Cook rice and dal along with 3 cups of water and 1 cup of milk in a pressure cooker for 5 whistles.
4. While the rice is getting cooked, take brown sugar and 1/4 cup of water in a saucepan and mix well till the brown sugar dissolves completely. Keep stirring till it reaches a thick syrup consistency. This should take about 10 minutes on medium flame.
5. Add powdered cardamom, nutmeg powder and saffron to the sugar syrup and mix well.
6. When the pressure is completely released, open the cooker and add sugar syrup to the rice and mix well.
7. Heat clarified butter/ghee in a separate pan and when hot, fry cashews, raisins and grated coconut till cashews turn golden brown and raisins become plump. Add them to the pongal along with ghee and mix well.
8. Serve warm with a dollop of ghee.