Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Pulagam ~ Sankranthi Tradition

Rice, moong dal, peanuts, jaggery and ghee rule the kitchen during Sankranthi in our homes.

For bhogi, pulagam (rice + split moong dal + salt) is the main dish, not pongali (rice + yellow moong dal + salt), and three peanut based recipes are prepared for pulagam.

Peanut-jaggery chutney,
Stuffed brinjal curry with peanuts and
No boil, cold peanut rasam (Peanut pacchi pulusu)

And the meal begins with prasadam – either jaggery rice pudding or sweet pongali. See, the whole kitchen revolves around rice, moong dal, peanuts, jaggery and ghee during Sankranthi.

Even though I grew up on this tradition, I rarely prepared them all for Sankranthi here. Because, for two people it’s lot of food and one also needs deep appetite to enjoy them. The whole combination is heavy and would make one sleepy in a minute. But yesterday I dared and cooked everything for Sankranthi. I was shivering 24 hours of day under Seattle’s arctic cold blast – God, I needed some rich food. So the rice, moong dal, peanut and ghee extravaganza.

Pulagam, Stuffed Brinjal Curry with Peanuts, Peanut-Jaggery Chutney, Peanut Pacchi Pulusu and Homemade Ghee
Pulagam, Stuffed Brinjal Curry with Peanuts, Peanut Pacchi Pulusu, Peanut-Jaggery Chutney & Ghee

Pulagam Recipe

1 cup split moong dal
1 ½ cups rice
6 cups water
1 teaspoon salt

Wash the rice and split moong dal together, once or twice, until the water is clear. Take them in a pressure cooker or in a big pot. Add 6 cups of water and a teaspoon of salt. Mix and simmer for about 20 to 30 minutes, stirring in-between or simply pressure cook to soft, falling apart stage.

Serve hot with peanut chutney/stuffed brinjal curry/peanut pacchi pulusu along with generous amounts of ghee for a festive meal or with homemade yogurt for an easy on stomach, light meal.

Sona Masuri Rice, Split Moong Dal and Salt ~ Ingredients for Pulagam
Sona Masuri Rice, Split Moong Dal and Salt ~ Ingredients for Pulagam

Preparing pulagam during Sankranthi is a Nandyala tradition.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Amma & Authentic Andhra,Moong Dal (Split),Sona Masuri Rice (Tuesday January 16, 2007 at 10:57 pm- permalink)
Comments (13)

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13 comments for Pulagam ~ Sankranthi Tradition »

  1. The spread looks delicious Indira,sure it would have been very heavy especially with the peanuts.Hope you are feeling all good and positive now.Stay happy!Love you!

    Comment by sumitha — January 17, 2007 @ 12:48 am

  2. Hi Indira,
    YOUr dishes looks awesome, I just fee l hugry by looking at them once. This is somewhat similat to what we call Khichdi- it is simple Kichadi when me made it this way. It feels simply great with Yogurt. thanks for sharing 🙂 .
    Happy Pongal.

    Comment by Pooja — January 17, 2007 @ 2:49 am

  3. Hi Indira,
    Good sankaranthi spread..Thanks for sharing.

    Comment by Menu Today — January 17, 2007 @ 4:47 am

  4. Hey, i’m from Vijayawada, A.P. The above mentioned ingredients rule our kitchens too during festivals, minus the peanuts. I haven’t seen so many peanut dishes before. We hardly ever use them except for peanut chutney and pappu chekka, and a handful in upma. Is it specific to Rayalaseema?

    Comment by Sunitha — January 17, 2007 @ 7:12 am

  5. Hi Indira,

    Your post is so divine! Reminds me so much of home!
    I’m just back from India and am in a deeply depressed/sulking mood! Miserable in this cold weather, missing my folks, food and weather back home! Kind of hibernating from the outside world, if you must say!
    And for Sankranthi – I just sulked and did nothing. Kind of influenced my family to do the same!
    Your post has made me more nostalgic, but has reminded me that Sankranthi here is what we make it to be.
    Thanks for the wonderful visual treat!
    I’ll pick up my broken mood and put together a post soon 🙂
    Hope you guys had a wonderful Sankranthi!

    Comment by Latha — January 17, 2007 @ 7:25 am

  6. Wonderful spread for Sankranthi Indira. I’ve never tried pulagam before, was always under the impression, pulagam and katte pongali are the same. Thanks for the clarification.

    Comment by Pavani — January 17, 2007 @ 8:36 am

  7. Indira,
    Do you toast the split moong dal before cooking with the rice for pulagam (just like venn pongal) ?
    The dark color of the dal in the picture makes me wonder.

    Comment by KM — January 17, 2007 @ 9:36 am

  8. Great Spread Indira!

    Comment by madhuli — January 17, 2007 @ 7:32 pm

  9. !!!! What a visula treat!!! And for sure it tastes the same!!! Lovely spread Indira 🙂

    Comment by Coffee — January 17, 2007 @ 8:11 pm

  10. Sumitha: Thanks and love you too.:)

    Puja: Pulagam tastes great with plain yogurt, I know and nice to know you guys also like it.
    Kichadi for us is – rice, yellow moong dal and onion, ginger-garlic paste plus spices like cloves, cinnamon. Recipe name changes with region, I guess.:)

    MT: Thanks and Happy Sankranthi!

    Sunitha: Peanuts for us is like coconut for you coastal guys. We use peanuts for everything, to thicken the curry gravies, for chutnies and also to prepare sweets. Particularly around Kurnool, Cuddapa and Anatapur areas.

    Welcome back Latha. Looks like you had a wonderful time in India. I am jealous. 🙂 So what goodies did you bring back?:)
    Weather here is brutal in January. I was also not cooking much since beginning of this year. under the weather, not feeling myself lately but I had enough of takeout meals so went and did everything for Sankranthi.:)

    For us, like pulihora and chitrannam – pongali and pulagam are two different preparations, Pavani. I am not sure they are called the same in other regions of Andhra.

    Hi KM: I did not toast the split moong dal, but the sunlight made it look little bit red. Outdoor shot.:)

    Thanks Madhuli and Coffee.

    Comment by Indira — January 17, 2007 @ 8:24 pm

  11. Hi,
    Fantastic web page design. I loved the Ravi Varma picture of the lady demurely holding a bowl of sweets. It is indeed a fitting match for your shankranthi dishes.Also the wikipedia link, with the traditional kolam design on the upper right hand corner is impressive. Well as for the dishes prepared by you under rather unpleasant weather conditions, I have just two words to say:”TRULY COMMENDABLE”!

    Comment by pritya — January 17, 2007 @ 9:16 pm

  12. awsome , i tried it, it came out excellent.
    Thanks a lot

    Comment by Ravi — March 8, 2007 @ 6:21 pm

  13. Great indira its lovely

    Comment by Ac Repair jaipur — March 10, 2018 @ 2:20 am

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