Anjarisi Pongal

Anjarisi pongal, a rice dish made using 5 varieties of rice, is a traditional pongal served in sumptuous Chettinad wedding feasts. They usually prepare anjarisi pongal or anjarisi payasam using black kavuni arisi, varagu arisi (kodo millet), rava (sooji), javvarisi (sago) and raw rice. But I tried using indigenous rice varieties well known for their nutritive values especially for low-GI property like white kavuni arisi, varagu arisi, moongil arisi (bamboo rice), mappillai samba arisi (red rice), and kaikuthal arisi (hand-pounded rice) for making delicious and nutritious pongal.

I prepared both sakkarai pongal (sweet pongal) & ven pongal (savory pongal) using the same combination of rice varieties. I found kaikuthal arisi, varagu arisi, and mappillai samba arisi nicely amalgamated with one another when cooked, but I could feel soft chunky moongil arisi and sticky white kavuni arisi in every bite, eventually this combination of rice lent a delicious texture ideal for making creamy pongal. Above all I felt extremely satisfied with flavourful anjarisi pongal loaded with nutrients rather than conventional raw rice pongal.

First I cooked the rice (pongal) separately and then prepared sweet pongal & savory pongal by adding spices or sweetener into cooked rice. Here I used banana for adding a fruit flavour, you may add apple, pineapple, jack fruit, or any other such fruit suitable for sweet pongal.


  • 1 cup of rice, a mixture of above said rice varieties (you may adjust the proportion of each rice according to your palate)
  • 1/2 cup of moong dal
  • 4 cups of water for pressure cooking

Pongal making:

  • Heat a pan with moong dal in medium flame.
  • Dry roast the lentils until they begin to change the color.
  • Remove from flame.
  • Wash rice & lentils.
  • Soak them for 30 minutes.
  • Heat a pressure cooker with water & rice mixture.
  • Bring it to boil in high flame.
  • Close the cooker and simmer for 15 minutes.
  • When the pressure is released mash well with a wooden spatula.

Sakkarai Pongal preparation:


  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup of powdered rice
  • 500 ml of water for syrup
  • 2 tbsp of ghee
  • A few cashew nuts & raisins
  • 2 cardamoms

Sakkarai pongal:

  • Heat a sauce pan with water and jaggery and bring it to boil in high flame.
  • Meanwhile add banana into the cooked rice and mash them well.
  • When the syrup begins to get thickened remove from flame.
  • Pour the syrup through a strainer into the half of cooked rice and cook this mixture in medium flame.
  • Meanwhile fry cashew nuts and raisins in ghee.
  • When the syrup is well amalgamated with rice, pour the ghee with cashew nuts.
  • Add powdered cardamom in to pongal and mix well.
  • Remove from flame.
  • Serve anjarisi pongal warm.

Ven Pongal preparation:


  • 2 tbsp of ghee
  • 1/2 tsp of cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp of coarsely ground pepper
  • 1 tsp of finely chopped ginger
  • a few cashew nuts
  • 1/2 tsp of turmeric powder
  • A pinch of asafoetida powder (hing)
  • A sprig of curry leaves
  • 1/2 tsp of salt

Ven pongal:

  • Heat a pan with ghee in medium flame.
  • Add cumin seeds, crushed pepper, cashew nuts and chopped ginger.
  • Fry them until cashew nuts turn golden.
  • Add curry leaves, turmeric powder and hing and saute for a minute.
  • Add the remaining rice and salt into the pan and combine together.
  • When the pongal is nicely infused with the flavours of spices, pour a tsp of ghee and remove from flame.
  • Serve ven pongal with coconut chutney and sambar.

You may check out my recipes here for traditional preparation of pongal in a pot (without using a pressure cooker), sakkarai pongal, ven pongal, kadamba sambar and avial usually prepared on the day of Pongal.

I wish all my readers across the globe a happy and prosperous Pongal!!


115 Comments Add yours

  1. anne leueen says:

    FIVE different kinds of rice. That is something new for me. Thank you for expanding my knowledge of rice!

    1. Megala says:

      Most welcome! By the way, it is also a learning experience for me and it motivates me to explore numerous other unfamiliar rice varieties as well. πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much for taking the time to read this.

  2. Jennifer Bliss says:

    I love that it uses 5 different kinds of rice! I’m not a banana fan but I’m wondering if I would like it in something like this! I wish there was a company that came out with a vegan ghee!

    1. Megala says:

      Banana is not an essential ingredient in here, and it is used just for a fruit flavor. I think you can use coconut oil infused with spices, or herbs as a substitute for ghee.
      Thank you so much!

  3. All the pongal varities look so good Megala πŸ‘πŸΌ

    1. Megala says:


  4. So delicious.So tempting. I will try this. Never heard about this. Thanks for the recipe

    1. Megala says:

      Glad that you liked to try this, thanks!

  5. Jyo says:

    So much deliciousness πŸ‘ hope u had a beautiful celebrations ! And I justtt love pongal❣️

    1. Megala says:

      Yes, we had! Thanks much! πŸ™‚

  6. Savvy Raj says:

    Greetings of Pongal !!! Nice presentation as usual. One of my favourite sweet rice treats. If you havent done a post already you might consider doing the arvana payasam
    version of chakrapongal as well.

    1. Megala says:

      I’m a huge fan of sakkara pongal & payasam, and I will definitely post the recipe for aravana payasam, a popular prasadam served in most of the temples in Kerala. Thank you so much. πŸ™‚

      1. Savvy Raj says:

        Great going!

  7. 3C Style says:

    Never tried Anjarisi Pongal. Something to add on my list of “Things to try for 2019” !

  8. Excellent recipe….love it!! Looks so sure will taste wonderful too.

    1. Megala says:

      Yes, thank you! πŸ™‚

  9. nancyc says:

    Sounds really good and healthy!

    1. Megala says:

      Yes, we also felt so. Thank you!

  10. I love both sweet and savoury Pongal but my favorite is sweet Pongal, thanks a lot for the recipe !

    1. Megala says:

      Yes, same here. πŸ™‚ Thanks much.

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