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Sarkkari Pongal


8 cups milk
1 1/2 cups rice
1/4 cup dry yellow split-peas
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
about 1/8 cup chopped almonds
about 1/8 cup chopped cashews
1/4 cup raisins, soaked in water to rehydrate
1/4 tsp nutmeg powder
3 Tbsp melted butter (ghee)
1 tsp cardamom powder
1/4 teaspoon saffron (optional)


1. Pour milk into a large pot or pan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once the milk boils, add rice and dry split-peas. Cover, reduce to medium.

2. As the rice and split peas begin to soften (about 15 minutes), add the melted butter and brown sugar. Stir well to prevent sticking, and continue to cook. Make sure that the milk remains at a low boil.

3. After 15 minutes, add the cashews, almonds, saffron, and cardamom powder. Remember to keep stiring well.

4. Cook over medium heat for another 10 minutes or so, then add the raisins and raise heat to bring the entire mixture to another boil.

5. Serve pongal directly from the cooking pot, allowing all to share the meal together.