Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Kendhata / Pongal Kuzhambu - Tanjore/Mayavaram Style - Pongal Special Recipes

Pongal is the traditional South Indian Harvest festival equivalent to Thanksgiving in Western Countries and it is celebrated elaborate and in a grand manner, for four days all over South India. It is celebrated on the First Day of the Tamil Month Thai (10th Month in Tamil Calendar). First day is celebrated as Bhogi where we dispose old worn out house hold materials and buy new ones. Second Day is the Perum Pongal or Soorya Pongal, during which people make Sweet Pongal and White Plain Pongal before Sun in new pots and offer it to Sun God as Sun being the major source of light for crop cultivation. We offer Sugarcane, Pongal and Banana on this day . Third Day is Celebrated as Maatu Pongal which is more for the Cattles and it is celebrated grand in village sides, even though people living in cities miss the chance of seeing such grand celebrations. Fouth Day is end of the Pongal Festival which is called Kaanum Pongal (Kaanum means Reunion), on which day people go and visit relatives houses and have some sort of get togerher in public places like Beach, Park etc.,
Pongal recipes include Sarkarai Pongal made out of New Rice with Milk, Jaggery and White Plain Pongal. Also we make Pongal Kuzhambu with all the veggies that are available during the season as a mark of offering the produce to the Sun God.

Here am sharing one authentic Pongal Kuzhambu Recipe which is a traditional recipe of Thanjavur/ Mayavaram, called as Kendhata. My Mom who hailed from Mayavaram is an expert in making this recipe and this is one recipe which I have always cherished as a child. It has the goodness and flavour of all country vegetables, lentils, tubers,..even they add Amla and Sugarcane Pieces. On Pongal Day night, they used to add water to the White Pongal and keep. The next day morning, they add in lot of fresh curds, chopped shallots and green chillies with salt as needed and prepare creamy curd rice. This Kuzhambu is reheated and made thick (we call it SundaKuzhambu) and served with the cold curd rice. Its heavenly to have this combo. Happy to share this traditional recipe for this Pongal. Thanks to mom for sharing me the recipe.

Happy and Prosperous Pongal to all :)

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