Ven Pongal with coconut chutney

Recipe (from Cookie’s Kitchen)

Serves 2-3

Ingredients

1 cup Medium grain raw rice (not boiled or parboilled)

1/2 cup Split yellow moong dal

Salt to taste

For the tempering

2 tsp Cumin Seeds

1 tsp Whole Black Pepper

10 Curry leaves

3-4 Cloves

2 tbsp finely chopped ginger

1/2 tsp Asfoetida Powder

3 tbsp Ghee

Garnish

10-15 cashewnuts

1 tsp Ghee

For the Coconut Chutney

1 cup Coconut- chopped into small pieces

1/3 cup Roasted chana dal

1/2 inch ginger

2 green chillis

2 tbsp coriander leaves

Salt

water

For the Chutney Tempering

a pinch of Asfoetida powder

2 Dry red chilli

1/4 tsp Urad dal (split)

1/2 tsp Mustard seeds

7-8 Curry Leaves

2 tsp oil

Method

Coconut Chutney

Grind all the ingredients with enough water to get a smooth paste with the desired consistency of the chutney. I like it thick so I add less water but you can choose to have it as thick or thin as you like. Heat the oil in a small pan and add the mustard seeds, urad dal, asfoetida, curry leaves and dry chilli. Let the mustard seeds pop and then add the seasoning to the chutney and give it a good mix.  Coconut chutney is ready.

Note:

1. I add coriander leaves to the chutney as I like the flavour and the colour it imparts to the chutney, you can choose to leave it out if you don't like coriander.

2. The coconut pieces should be cut into small pieces to ensure smooth grinding.

3. Water should be added little by little till you get the desired consistency.

Pongal

Wash the rice and dal thoroughly till the water you wash it in remains clear. In the pressure cooker heat a tsp of ghee and add the rice and dal to it. Fry it for 5 minutes in the hot ghee uncovered. Now add 3 cups of water followed by salt (to taste) to the pressure cooker and place the lid on it. Let it pressure cook for 3 whistles or about 10 minutes till rice and dal are completely cooked through and mushy.

Prepare the tempering by heating 2 tsp of ghee and adding cumin seeds, asfoetida, pepper, curry leaves and cloves to it followed by the ginger. Let the cumin seeds turn brown and then mix the seasoning with the cooked rice and dal mixture. Give it a good mix so that everything is well combined.

Fry the cashew nuts in a tsp of ghee and mix it with the pongal and leave a few for garnish. Serve the pongal topped with crunchy cashews with a side of coconut chutney.