Sakkare Pongal

Mung dhal and rice, cooked with milk and sugar

  1. Dry roast mung dhal until it just changes colour.

  2. Wash rice and mung dhal together and soak for an hour. Drain in a colander.

  3. In a large saucepan bring milk and 2 cups of water to a boil. Add dhal, rice and coconut. Cook on medium low heat, stirring often, until water is completely absorbed.

  4. Add brown sugar, cook on low heat, stirring frequently to prevent pongal sticking to the bottom of the pan. Add 3 teaspoons ghee and cook until sugar mixes well with rice and dhal and pongal becomes a sticky mass.

  5. Warm 1 teaspoon ghee in a small saucepan over a medium low heat. Fry cashew nuts until golden. Stir in sultanas and fry for about 20 seconds. Add to pongal.

  6. Stir in cardamom and cloves. Remove from heat.

Serve warm.

Variation: use ¼ cup rice and ¼ cup broken wheat (cracked wheat) instead of ½ cup rice.


Per serve: energy 703 kJ (167 cal); protein 5 g; fat 4 g; saturated fat 3 g; cholesterol 7 mg; carbohydrate 28 g; fibre 2 g; calcium 65 mg; iron 0.8 mg; sodium 16 mg

Serves 8 


⅓ cup mung dhal (split, skinned green gram)

½ cup basmati rice

1 cup fat free milk

2 tablespoons desiccated coconut

1 cup brown sugar

3 teaspoons ghee (clarified butter) + 1 teaspoon


10 cashew nuts, broken into bits

1 tablespoon sultanas

½ teaspoon ground cardamom

½ teaspoon ground cloves or nutmeg


Mung dhal is a good source of protein, B vitamin, folate, iron and fibre.