I maybe miles away but the spirit of Onam always stays close to my heart.
Onam is the national festival of Kerala and it is celebrated by all, regardless of religion, caste etc with equal enthusiasm. It is also known as the harvest festival of Kerala and is usually celebrated on the 22nd day of Chingam. This year Onam is on September 2nd. It is a 10 day festival and celebrations begin on the 23rd of August. Each day has a special name and a specific activity attached to that day. Malayalees all over the world celebrate Onam with great enthusiasm.
We are no different, we maybe away from Kerala but that does not stop us from celebrating Onam year after year. We love it. We call over some of our Non- Malayalee friends and show off our Onasadhya. Simple vegetarian food displayed on a banana leaf and relished slowly- a taste of Kerala in each mouthful. Just as we have our non- vegetarian delicacies, our ONA SADHYA which is purely vegetarian is a foodies delight. At the entrance of our home is a ‘POOKALAM’ usually put together by the children. The ladies dress up in our traditional Kerala off white Kasavu saris while the men folk show off in their kasavu Mundu. This year we had plans of going home for Onam, but Covid changed everything. We will wait for next year.
Parippu payasam is a traditional South Indian dessert served at any celebration or auspicious occasion. There are only 3 main ingredients- moong dal, coconut milk and jaggery. It is a balance of these 3 ingredients that ensures whether the end result is a huge success or not.
Hoping all of you will try out this simple awesome payasam this Onam –
- Moong dal -1 cup
- Thick coconut milk-3 cups
- Jaggery -1/2 kg
- Shredded Coconut pieces- 3/4 cup
- Seedless Kismis -2 tbsp
- Broken Cashewnuts -2 tbsp
- Roasted cummin powder -1 tsp
- Cardamom powder – a big pinch
- Ghee 2-3 tbsp
- Water to melt the jaggery -1/2 cup
- Melt the jaggery in 1/2 cup of water. Strain and keep aside.
- In ghee, fry the cashewnuts, raisins and coconut pieces one by one and keep it aside.
- For the payasam, fry the moong dal lightly for a few minutes. ( 3-4 minutes)
- Transfer the dal to a pressure cooker, add 2-3 cups of water. After the first whistle switch off the flame and let the steam release on its own.
- Transfer the cooked dal to a vessel and add the melted jaggery to it.
- The payasam should be brought together on a medium heat.
- Add the coconut milk and stir continuously till well blended. Do not boil.
- Add the roasted jeera powder, cardamom powder and taste again.
- Finally garnish with fried raisins, fried broken cashewnuts and fried coconut pieces .
- Give it a nice stir, taste again and serve.
- When making a payasam, taste and taste again at every stage.
- Nothing should be overpowering, be it the roasted cummin powder or the cardamom powder or even the sweetness of the jaggery.
- In case you find the payasam overtly sweet, then balance it out with a little more coconut milk.
- I always keep a tetrapacket of coconut milk in case I need it at the end.
- However, there is no substitute for fresh coconut milk.
- The colour of the payasam depends on the jaggery.
- The darker the jaggery, the more dark will the payasam be.
- 1 coconut should do for the coconut milk and the shredded pieces.
- This payasam serves 4-6 adults.
Go ahead and show off this Onam .
Happy Onam to all of you.
Till my next post,