As the sun enters the tropic of Capricorn, people across the country celebrate the harvest with great enthusiasm and joy. The festival is celebrated across India as Lohri, Maghi, Sakraat, Maagha Saaji, Uttarayan, Bhogali, Bihu, Sankramana, Makar Sankranti, and Pongal.
Indulge in festive celebrations while keeping your food platter nourishing this season with this traditional Pongal recipe by giving it a healthy twist. Replace white rice with Foxtail millet, also known as Kangni in Hindi, Thinai in Tamil, and Navane in Kannada. The iron and calcium-rich millet builds immunity, promotes digestion, and triggers weight loss. The gluten-free moong daal is a low-fat, high protein, and fibre-rich pulse loaded with vitamins, minerals, and essential nutrients. The ginger, turmeric, and peppercorn add a power-packed punch of flavours and health benefits.
Pongal with a Healthy Twist - Foxtail Millet Porridge / Thinai Pongal
The nutritious and delicious Thinai Pongal is best enjoyed with hot rasam or vegetable sambar, tempered buttermilk, mango pickle or coconut chutney, and crispy poppadum.
Half cup Foxtail Millet
Half cup Moong Daal
4-5 cups water
Salt - as required
1 tsp Good Lyfe Project Karbi Anglong Ginger Superoot Powder
For tempering - Organic ghee, cashews, jeera, curry leaves, slit green chillies, dry red chillies, peppercorns, asafoetida, Good Lyfe Project Lakadong Turmeric Superoot Powder
For garnishing - freshly chopped coriander leaves, grated coconut.
Place a pressure cooker on the flame and mildly roast the moong dal to release the aroma.
Once the dal cools, add the millets and wash until the water runs clear.
Add water, salt, ginger powder, and pressure cook for 2-3 whistles.
Once the steam releases, mash a portion of Pongal with the back of the ladle to create a mushy and creamy consistency.
Add more water if required and boil till mixed well. Transfer the content to the serving bowl.
In another pan, heat the organic ghee, roast the cashews, splutter jeera, curry leaves, slit green chillies, dry red chillies, mildly crushed peppercorns, a pinch of Good Lyfe Lakadong turmeric powder, and asafoetida.
Add the tempering over Pongal and garnish with fresh coriander leaves and grated coconut.
Serve with a side of rasam or vegetable sambar, tempered buttermilk, mango pickle or coconut chutney, and poppadum as preferred.
Complete your festival platter with Til-Gud ke Laddoo, Peanut Chikki, Mixed Seeds Granola Bar, Sweet Pongal, Jaggery Payasam, and more.
- You can replace organic ghee with gingelly oil or coconut oil for a vegan version tempering for your Thinai Pongal.
- You can add a handful of freshly harvested produce (peas, green chana, tuvar or lilva) available locally to your Foxtail Millet Porridge.
Thinai Pongal is a wholesome and nutritious festive delight, recognised as a Satvik food in Ayurveda. The tummy-filling and soul-satisfying porridge is intrinsic to the Sankranti celebration and holistic health.