Pongal being a popular Harvest festival for all the South Indians, It has left us filled with all the rich and everlasting taste of all the festival food being prepared on this auspicious occasion. I will be taking you through the preparation of what “Pongal Sapad” or " Pongal Bhojanam" (Pongal Lunch Meal) would be in South Indian households.
Before I move on to the food, here is a little introduction about pongal. It is considered as the main harvest festival among the south Indians. In Tamil the word “Pong” or in Telugu “Pongu” means “boil over” or “Spill Over”. This is considered as the main significance of the festival which depicts the celebration and lifestyle of Indian Farmers.
The pongal is celebrated for four long days, where each day in Tamil Nadu signifies the importance of Harvest :
- 1st day is considered as Bhogi, where people burn down things that are considered to be old.
- 2nd day is for the “Sun God”. On this day people celebrated it by making “Chakkra Pongal” with newly harvested rice and jaggery.
- 3rd day is considered as the “Mattu Pongal” dedicated to the cattle, especially for cows which provides the farmers with good amount of produce.
- 4th day is the “Kannum Pongal” again dedicated to the Sun God, and on this day people visit their neighbor’s house and give them offering.
As the meal should consist of all the ingredients and produce that are obtained right from the Harvest season. In South India the meal consists of Sweet and Savory Pongal , Dry vegetable (Poriyal/Palya) , Vegetable Gravy (Kuzhambu/Koora ), Savory Fritters, Spicy Salad, Papads and Pickles.
The meals that is shown is typically prepared during Pongal, but it can also be made for any occasion and can be relished as a rich and comforting meal with your family. It is traditionally eaten on a Banana Leaf as there are few benefits that are found to be good for human body. For example the antioxidants that are present on the leaf helps to fight cancer, at the same time it is considered to be hygienic and provides the best aroma while eating.
The dishes prepared for the meal are:
- Carrot Cucumber Tomato Salad with Lemon and Coriander
- Tamil Nadu Style Vazha Thandu Poriyal Recipe
- Medu Vada Recipe (Traditional Fried Urad Vada Using Vada Maker)
- Murungakkai Mor Kuzhambu Recipe (Drumstick Buttermilk Curry Recipe)
- Senai Kizhangu Ghostu Recipe (Spicy & Tangy Yam Curry Recipe)
- Ven Pongal Recipe (South Indian Rice and Lentil Pudding)
- Sakkarai Pongal Recipe (Sweetened Rice And Jaggery Pudding)
- Puliyodharai / Puliyogare Recipe (Spicy Tamarind Rice) with Pulikachal
- Nellikai urugai/Amla Sambharo Recipe
- Elai Vadam Recipe (A Traditional South Indian Rice Papad)
- Yogurt or Curd