Rava Pongal – Sankranti Special Recipe

Rava Pongal - Sankranti Special Recipe

Makara Sankranti is the harvest festival that is celebrated all over India under different names. It is typically a 4 day festival in my home state of Andhra Pradesh. One of the dishes that is made during this festival is Katte Pongali or Ven Pongal. This is a dish that uses moong dal (husked green gram) and rice spiced with cumin and pepper.

Today, I am making Rava Pongal, that is Pongal with Semolina instead of rice. The result is a much lighter dish but one which is just as tasty.

How to Make Rava Pongal

Rava Pongal - Sankranti Special Recipe
Rava Pongal - Sankranti Special Recipe
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
25 mins
Rava Pongal is Katte Pongali or Ven Pongal made with Rava or Semolina instead of rice.
Course: Breakfast, Main
Cuisine: Andhra Pradesh, Indian, Tamil Nadu
Servings: 4
Author: Aruna
  • 1 Cup Rava
  • 2/3 Cup Moong Dal or Pesara Pappu
  • 1 tsp Cumin Seeds, Jeera, or Jeelakarra
  • 10 to 12 Peppercorns
  • 1 tsp Grated Ginger
  • 1 + 1 tbsp Ghee
  • 10 to 12 Cashew
  • 3 Cups Water
  • A Few Curry Leaves Optional
  • Salt to Taste
The Preparations for Rava Pongal
  1. Over a medium flame, dry roast the Rava till it just starts to change colour.
  2. Spread in a plate to cool.
  3. Split the cashews and set aside.
  4. Crush the pepper corns a bit and set aside.
Cooking the Moong Dal
  1. Wash the moong dal.
  2. Pressure cook the dal in 2 cups of water for 3-4 whistles.
  3. Mash the dal.
  4. Set aside.
Method to Make Rava Pongal
  1. In a kadai, heat 1 tbsp ghee.
  2. Add the split cashews and fry till they start to change colour.
  3. Add the cumin seeds and wait till they change colour.
  4. Add the pepper, grated ginger and curry leaves.
  5. Stir-fry for a few seconds.
  6. Add the water and salt. The water should just taste salty; like tears as my mom used to say. 🙂
  7. Wait till the water starts to boil.
  8. Turn the heat to low.
  9. Add the roasted rava slowly.
  10. Mix well to ensure there are no lumps.
  11. Let the rava cook in water for about 2-3 minutes.
  12. Add the cooked moong dal.
  13. Mix well.
  14. Add more salt if required.
  15. Let the Rava Pongal cook over low flame till it is solid.
  16. Turn off the heat.
  17. Add 1 tbsp ghee and mix well.
  18. Serve hot with Coconut Chutney.
Recipe Notes

You could add a pinch of turmeric, if required.


Chakkara Pongal (Sweet Pongal) – Makara Sankranti Special

Chakkara Pongal or Sweet Pongal
Chakkara Pongal or Sweet Pongal

Happy New Year 2013! Here is a sweet recipe to start the new year. 🙂

I was in Chennai last week and the city is all set to celebrate Pongal on January 14. That is when I realised I had not posted the recipes for Chakkara Pongal (sweet) or Venn Pongal (savoury) or Pulagam as it is called in Andhra Pradesh.

Chakkara Pongal is a very popular naivedyam for many South Indian festivals. In fact, there is something about the Chakkara Pongal made in a temple that can soothe the soul. This time, I almost captured that taste and feel.

So here goes!


  1. Rice – 1 Cup
  2. Moong Dal – 2/3 Cup
  3. Grated Jaggery – 2.5 Cups
  4. Milk – 1 Cup
  5. Water – 3.5 Cups
  6. Cashews – 8 to 10
  7. Green Cardamom – 4 or 5
  8. Ghee – 3 tbsp


  1. Roast the moong dal till it turns light brown.
  2. Wash the rice and drain all the water.
  3. Mix the rice, dal, 2 cups water, and 1 cup milk.
  4. Cook the mix in a pressure cooker without the weight.
  5. To a heavy-bottomed vessel, add the jaggery and 1/2 cup water.
  6. Over low to medium heat, cook till the jaggery melts and forms a thick syrup.
  7. Add crushed green cardamom to the jaggery mix.
  8. Add the cooked rice-dal mix and mix well.
  9. Over medium heat, cook the mix till all the syrup is absorbed.
  10. Turn off the heat. In a ladle, heat the ghee.
  11. Add split cashew nuts and fry till golden brown.
  12. Add the ghee and cashew to the pongal.
  13. Offer as naivedyam and serve as prasadam. (Serve warm).


  • If your jaggery is not refined or has some residue, then add 3/4 cup water in step 5.
  • Strain the jaggery syrup to remove the residue and move onto step 6.
  • You can also add raisins and some saffron soaked in warm milk to the pongal.