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Pongal (hot pongal or ven pongal) is a traditional spicy south Indian breakfast. Usually pongal is made with lot of ghee (clarified butter) or oil. Here is a recipe for tasty and healthy pongal with brown rice and that is  free of ghee and oil.

Servings 6-8, Cooking time  35- 40 mins


Soak rice for 30 minutes. Rinse and wash the rice.

Boil the rice in six cups of water for 10 mins. Add moong dal and let it boil with rice for another 15 mins. Add green chili and ginger, add 4 curry leaves. Let it cook for another 10 mins then add salt. Stir well.

In a separate pan – dry roast ¼ tsp of peppercorn, ½ tsp jeera, cashews, 10 curry leaves, ¼ tsp hing powder – for 2 mins. Combine this dry roasted mixture to the above rice/mung bean combo. Stir well.

Add ¼ tsp of ground pepper powder and stir – transfer the contents into serving bowl.



1 cup brown rice (200 grams or 6 and half ounces)
1/2 cup or 100 grams moong dal (mung bean or green grams)
1/4 teaspoon Black peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon Jeera/Cumin
1/4 teaspoon Hing powder/asafoetida
20 gms Cashews (15-20 cashews)
12-14 Curry leaves
2 green Green chili chopped
1 inch Ginger – minced/finely chopped
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper powder