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Khara Pongal Recipe

Khara pongal – a classic South Indian breakfast dish – a hearty porridge style dish to start your day on a healthy note.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Calories 3850 kcal


  • ½ cup rice
  • ½ cup moong dal
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder or ground turmeric
  • 1 cup milk optional
  • Salt to taste

For tempering

  • 2 tablespoons clarified butter/ghee
  • 10-12 raw cashew nuts
  • 10-12 curry leaves
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds/jeera
  • ½ teaspoon about 15-20 black pepper corns
  • 1 inch ginger; julienne
  • 1-2 tablespoon grated coconut fresh or frozen and thawed


  • Preheat the pressure cooker for a minute over medium heat.
  • Add moong dal to the pressure cooker and fry till it starts to brown and turns aromatic.
  • Wash the roasted moong dal along with rice and drain the water.
  • Soak rice and moong dal mix for about 15 minutes (you can soak it in the pressure cooker itself).
  • Drain after 15 minutes and add 1 cup of milk and 3 cups of water along with turmeric powder (or ground turmeric) and salt to taste.
  • Close the pressure cooker lid, put the whistle on and cook over high heat till it releases the first whistle (steam).
  • Reduce the heat to medium and cook for another 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and let the steam escape completely (this will take about 8-10 minutes).
  • Open the pressure cooker, adjust the seasonings and let it simmer over medium heat for a few minutes.
  • In a separate pan, heat ghee over medium heat.
  • Using a mortar and pestle, roughly crush half of the black pepper.
  • Fry the raw cashew nuts in ghee till they start to brown.
  • To this ghee, add the black pepper (crushed as well as whole), cumin seeds and saute for a few seconds.
  • Add the grated coconut and ginger and roast till coconut starts to change color.
  • Pour this seasoned ghee over the simmering pongal.
  • Serve hot with onion raitha and/or coconut chutney/kootu.


1. Soaking the dal and rice speeds up the cooking.[br]2. Cooking times will vary depending on the stove temperature, volume of the pressure cooker etc. Use as a guide only.[br]3. Cook time also includes the approx. 10 minutes wait time to release the steam from the pressure cooker.[br]4. Pongal thickens a little on cooling. You can save leftovers in the refrigerator and re heat in a microwave or on stove top (add water if required to adjust consistency) just before serving.