If Yogurt rice occupies the # 1 spot in a South Indian's list of food faves, then 'Venn Pongal' is usually with in the top five list of comfort foods. Almost every South Indian reading this recipe probably has some story about a weekend brunch comprising of a large dollop of steaming hot & thick porridge of rice & tasted moong dal, with a side of crisp Medu Vada with an almost unlimited supply of tangy piquant Coconut chutney to go with it. The added bonus was licking the plate clean!
Back to Venn Pongal, as I said, Its a mix of well (even slightly overcooked) rice & moong dal ( which is the quickest cooking of all the lentils in the typical South indian pantry). The toasted lentils gives the final dish a subtle nutty flavor and that complements the rich aroma of melted ghee (clarified butter) that is used to finish the polenta. The dish is spiced with Cumin & black peppercorn and ginger & curry leaves round off the flavor profile.
This fusion offering combines comfort foods from 2 southern regions of the world, The US of A & India. —Panfusine
dehusked mung beans
white cornmeal grits
whole black peppercorns
cumin coarsely powdered
black pepper powder
inch fresh ginger root, finely grated
curry leaves (torn & stem discarded)
Cashew nuts, broken up + some extra for garnish