Cuisine: Karnataka Cuisine

Sihi Kumabalakayi Gojju | Yellow Pumpkin Curry

Sihi Kumabalakayi Gojju | Yellow Pumpkin Curry

Creamy, spicy, sweet and oh-so-easy! This sihi kumbalakayi gojju (Yellow pumpkin curry) is the easiest curry you could make when you’re pressed for time. Just 5 basic ingredients and you have this gorgeous curry ready in 30 minutes! Sankranthi/Pongal saw some pumpkin in abundance. Yes, […]

Haalu Menasina Saaru

Haalu Menasina Saaru

A hand-me-down recipe from my grandmom, this Haalu menasina saaru ( literally translates to milk pepper rasam) is a rich and soupy rasam recipe that is just right for cold and nippy days. It has pepper, urad dal and channa dal as a base, cooked […]

Little Millet Pongal | Saame Pongal Recipe

Little Millet Pongal | Saame Pongal Recipe

Healthy, light, easy and loaded with proteins and fiber, this little millet pongal recipe is the healthiest dish you can make for Sankranthi. Cooked with split moong dal, little millet and seasoned with pepper, cumin and a generous hint of ginger – there’s no better way to start your day than with this healthy dish.

Little Millet Pongal - Slurpy Platter - Saame Pongal

Come January, it is the time for harvesting happiness as Makara Sankranthi – the harvest festival falls on either the 14th or 15th of January, every year. It is the time when the winter sun marks the transition of the Sun into its celestial path and begins his northward journey. The traditional Indian calendar is based on lunar positions, Sankranti is a solar event.

This is also the time when all the farmers celebrate their first harvest of the season and offer it to the Gods. It is a way of expressing gratitude for all the good things that have been received.

Of course, Sankranti celebrations and rituals vary from region to region and in Karnataka we celebrate it with a special mixture of yellu ( til), bella (jaggery) that is mixed with roasted and peeled groundnuts, dried coconut and fried gram dal which is just right for the season (winter) to keep the body warm.

Little Millet Pongal - Slurpy Platter - Saame Pongal

Little Millet Pongal

Here’s what little millet looks like when you buy it from the store. I buy mine from the organic farmer’s market that happens once a month near my place. This is an unpolished version of the little millet which has nutrients intact.

Saame pongal-Little Millet Pongal - Slurpy Platter

Significance of yellu bella during Sankranti:

The til is known to negate all the toxins in our body and the jaggery keeps our body warm, since both these are warmers, the dried coconut is known to have cooling properties which balances the heat. The groundnut of course is for the protein and anti-oxidants. So it is a perfect balance of all the ingredients to keep the body in sync with the season.

Nostalgia

I remember the days when I was young and my grandmom would painstakingly cut the jaggery, dried coconut with a scissor specifically designed for cutting them into small chunks. She would lay them on the terrace to sun dry and how we’d sneak into the space to stealthily pop in some jaggery and coconut only to get yelled by her later ha ha ha. Those are the days I really miss the most and the memories still remain afresh. If only we could travel back in time! Phew!

Little Millet Pongal - Slurpy Platter - Saame Pongal

Anyway, coming back to little millet pongal – the general norm at most household is to make pongal with rice and moong dal. However, owing to curb some carbs and eating healthy, we switched to millets 3 years ago. ever since then it has been millets pongal on Sankranthi. Of course, you could make this with red rice/brown rice. But making it with millets keeps you all the more lighter.

Little millet tastes the closest to rice and is not too bland either. It tastes just right and would be the perfect breakfast even on other days or as an option for lunch box.

Why little millet:

  • Because it is high on fiber
  • Simple to cook
  • Helps in weight loss
  • Is great for diabetics

You might also like:

Barnyard Millet Idly

Foxtail Millet Payasa

Foxtail Millet and Lentil Dumplings

Little Millet Pongal - Slurpy Platter - Saame Pongal
Little Millet Pongal | Saame Pongal Recipe
Healthy, light, easy and loaded with proteins and fiber, this little millet pongal recipe is the healthiest dish you can make for Sankranthi. Cooked with split moong dal, little millet and seasoned with pepper, cumin and a generous hint of ginger - there's no better way to start your day than with this healthy dish.
Little Millet Pongal - Slurpy Platter - Saame Pongal
Little Millet Pongal | Saame Pongal Recipe
Healthy, light, easy and loaded with proteins and fiber, this little millet pongal recipe is the healthiest dish you can make for Sankranthi. Cooked with split moong dal, little millet and seasoned with pepper, cumin and a generous hint of ginger - there's no better way to start your day than with this healthy dish.
Servings Prep Time
4People 15Minutes
Cook Time
20Minutes
Servings Prep Time
4People 15Minutes
Cook Time
20Minutes
Ingredients
For tempering
Instructions
  1. To begin making the little millet saame pongal, mix the little millet and moong dal together and wash it 3-4 times. Keep it aside.
  2. In a pressure cooker, heat oil and add the mustard, jeera - once they crackle add the green chillies, hing, turmeric and curry leaves. Now add the cashews and fry till they turn golden brown. Keep a small portion of this for garnishing.
  3. Now add the little millet and moong dal - give it a quick mix. Add 2 cups of water to this and wait till it comes to a slight boil.
  4. Time to add the ginger, pepper powder and salt - give it a quick mix. Close the pressure cooker and let it cook until 2-3 whistles. Once the cooker cools, open and give it a fluff, check if you need to add more water in case it is a bit dry. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with a bit of seasoning.
Recipe Notes

You can use foxtail millet/ barnyard millet as well instead of little millet if you want to experiment.

You could also try this recipe with brown/red rice instead of millets.

Hulisoppu | Mixed Greens Curry

Hulisoppu | Mixed Greens Curry

This recipe for Hulisoppu is simple food that is simply delicious. A traditional and authentic Karnataka recipe which is easy, ready in 30 minutes and absolutely healthy and satisfying.

Ragi Halbai

Ragi Halbai

Make this Ragi Halbai, a sweet native to Karnataka that is made with jaggery and coconut.

Ridge Gourd Peel Chutney | Heerekayi Sippe Chutney

Ridge Gourd Peel Chutney | Heerekayi Sippe Chutney

A simple and easy chutney recipe made with ridge gourd peel that goes really well with idli, dose, chapati and steamed rice. 

Ridgegourd peel chutney - Slurpy Platter

Heerekayi or Ridge Gourd is a vegetable that’s rich so fiber, that even the peels have the ability to prevent constipation and aids in weight loss.

When I first tasted this chutney at Kamath Upahar near my office, I could distinctly feel the flavours of ridge gourd, onion and garlic. It was soooo good that I actually ate the chutney alone and had multiple servings (shamelessly!) 😛

Ridge gourd is such a versatile vegetable. You can make sambhar, chutney, dal, bhajji, stir-fry and a lot more. Although, it’s bland by nature, you can pretty much combine it with any vegetable and create magic.

 

Did you know? Ridge gourd is so full of fiber? It’s great for constipation, lowering blood sugar, hypoglycemia, weight loss, boost the immune system, detoxing, helps with acne and many more challenges. Ridge Gourd is a very healthy veggie because it contains very few calories (only 40 calories per cup) and thus it works well for weight loss. Source: Google

Plus, it goes soo well with khali dose, masala dose, idli and chapati. You’ll love it with a bowl of steamed rice too. I paired this chutney with

Barnyard Millet Idli

Do give it a try.

Ridge Gourd Peel Chutney | Heerekayi Sippe Chutney
A simple and easy chutney recipe made with ridge gourd peel that goes really well with idli, dose, chapati and steamed rice. 
Ridge Gourd Peel Chutney | Heerekayi Sippe Chutney
A simple and easy chutney recipe made with ridge gourd peel that goes really well with idli, dose, chapati and steamed rice. 
Servings Prep Time
1Bowl 10Minutes
Cook Time
10Minutes
Servings Prep Time
1Bowl 10Minutes
Cook Time
10Minutes
Ingredients
To be sauteed and ground to a paste
For Tempering
Instructions
  1. Heat a tbsp of oil in a pan, and add the onions and green chilli. Saute till they brown a bit and the chillies wilt just a bit.
  2. Now add the ridge gourd peel and fry till the raw smell goes. The peels will wilt as you fry.
  3. Add in the ridge gourd and sprinkle some water, cover it till gets tender. You can add a pinch of salt at this stage to accelerate the cooking.
  4. Once they are all cooked, add the grated coconut and give it a quick stir so that all of them come together. This process is also done to increase the shelf life of the chutney since we're using freshly grated coconut.
  5. Switch off the stove and allow it to cool. Grind them in the mixer along with the fried gram dal and a bit of salt to a coarse paste. Transfer it to a serving bowl.
  6. In a small pan, heat 1 tsp of oil and add the ingredients listed under tempering and pour it over the chutney.
  7. Enjoy this with idli, dose, chapathi or even with a bowl of steamed rice.
Recipe Notes
  • I chose to add the ridge gourd as well in the chutney to give it more body and it also tastes good.
  • You can add just the peel is you prefer. Take care not to add too much water while grinding which makes the chutney watery.
  • You can store this in the refrigerator for about 2-3 days.
  • You can omit adding the coconut if you prefer, and add a few more slices of roasted onion. If you prefer to have a no-onion, no-garlic version then add more coconut and the ridge gourd slices instead of the onions.
  • It is recommended to follow the recipe as it tastes the best.
Navane Nucchina Unde | Foxtail Millet and Lentil Dumplings

Navane Nucchina Unde | Foxtail Millet and Lentil Dumplings

A healthy alternative to fried snacks, these foxtail millet dumplings | Navane Nucchina Unde are your best bet as an evening snack as well as a starter before a meal.

Ragi Bliss Balls

Ragi Bliss Balls

Get your hands over these guilt-free ragi bliss balls. Only 5 Ingredients and you have a super healthy snack that you can enjoy without an iota of guilt.