Thursday, July 1, 2010

Broken Wheat Pongal

A sincere thanks to all the readers who read what I write. And a special thanks to those who leave a comment or send me an email related to the blog's contents. I really appreciate your time taken to do any or all of these things.

Having said that, people have started eating chapathis, rotis more than rice nowadays. This is a good thing since wheat is better for health particularly for Indians and vegetarians who consume carbohydrates as the main category of food. When I said Indians it is because we are prone to get diabetes more than others. At the same time, if you are making rotis every day, it kind of gets boring and that is why I tend to mix in something else couple of days a week. Eating rice is not bad. Eating too much of rice and not burning those calories is bad. Making rotis for a family of 4 with one kind of dal and one kind of vegetable side dish does take time and on the days I have other errands to take care of, I cook either quinoa or like today broken wheat pongal. It is hearty, healthy and filling. You can serve this with any chutney of your choice or some kind of gojju or sambar.

Broken wheat - 2 cups
Moong dal / Hesaru bele - 1/2 cup
Oil - 4 TBSP (See notes)
Salt - to taste
Turmeric - a big pinch or two
Hing - Generous two pinches
Cumin / Jeerige - 1 1/2 TBSP divided use
Black Pepper - 1 tsp not powdered
Black Pepper - 1 - 2 TBSP coarsely crushed (Do not use the already powdered one for authentic taste)
Dry coconut / Copra / Kobbari - 1/2 cup grated or more to your liking
Ginger - 2 " piece peeled and grated
Cashews - 1/4 cup (optional)

You can make this in a single pot if you like. I prefer to pressure cook and then give the seasoning. In a skillet, dry roast moong dal till lightly golden. Some people roast it very lightly so that it gets mushed when it cooks, but I prefer it to be well roasted so that it tastes better. When they are almost done, add the broken wheat to the same skillet and stir for a minute or two. Turn off the heat.  Rinse the dal and broken wheat together and add 5 cups of water. Add turmeric, 1/2 TBSP of cumin, 1 tsp of whole pepper corns and pressure cook for two whistles. In another pan, heat oil. When hot, add the remaining cumin seeds. When they crackle, add grated ginger, hing, coarsely crushed pepper, cashews. Fry till the cashews are golden. Add the cooked dal and broken wheat mixture, salt to taste and mix well. If the mixture is too thick, you can add some water to thin it down. Add the dry coconut gratings and mix well. Cover and simmer for about 5 minutes and turn off the heat. You can serve this with chutney or gojju or like I did with sambar.

Broken wheat or cracked wheat is not the same as cream of wheat. It is coarser in texture. Instead of oil, you can use ghee to make it taste great. You can add lot more than 4 TBSP of it. In fact, when they serve pongal made with rice in weddings, you can see a layer of ghee floating on the top. I prefer not to use too much of ghee or oil in every day cooking. When I said add some cumin and whole black pepper to the contents while pressure cooking, it was not a mistake in writing. It gives the dal and rice/broken wheat mixture a nice aroma. You can make it with regular rice with the same recipe or use brown rice. If using brown rice, you might have to increase the water a bit since it takes a lot more water than regular rice does.

Enjoy!! Pin It


  1. Thanks for the recipe..I am probably in the minority as i do enjoy broken wheat. This is a great recipe.

  2. wow pongal with broken wheat sounds gr8...a very healthy one n i am sure tasty too...looks wonderful with sambar ...its mouth watering ..thanks for this recipe dear

  3. wow..looks delicious and thanks for sharing..

  4. Broken wheat pongal looks delicious.Nice variation for a healthy diet.

  5. Love this healthy pongal..have never tried this..thanks for sharing..

  6. Pongal looks delicious, Saw your mail, It was really kind of you , I already asked Priya About choosing this ingredient beforehand. Ive forwarded your mail to her, waiting for her reply.

  7. It looks great dear, lovely dish with broken wheat.

  8. Thats a great recipe! So healthy and yumm!

  9. Wat a healthy dish to enjoy without any guilt, looks fabulous..

  10. Love your new template.. Nice chocolaty shade..
    Broken wheat and Moong dhal makes a perfect healthy meal..

  11. You said it Champa!! This is one of the best,tasty,quick and healthy dish. Love my broken wheat pongal with chutney. I make bisi bele bhat with this too.

  12. Broken wheat pongal is way too healthier than the regular rice version.... I should start using broken wheat regularly... we use it only for payasa...

  13. wow, really interesting. nicely done.

  14. Delicious looking recipe. I always buy broken wheat (it is another name for burghul/bulghur, right?) to make tabbouleh and never know what to do with it afterwards... So I would love to try your recipe!

  15. Sweet Artichoke,
    Broken wheat is not the same as bulgar even though you can use bulgar to make this dish. Bulgar doesn't need to be pressure cooked. Broken wheat is just cracked wheat. Hope this helps.

  16. Hi Champa,
    Thanks for the clarification :-) I will try with bulghur, then and see the result!

  17. I too make pongal with cracked wheat. Also try to make most of the rice dishes like pulao, bisibelebath etc with broken wheat.

  18. Broken wheat has become a staple item in our home, we love making this for breakfast.

  19. Beautiful recipes and great blog. Nice to be here. Best wishes.


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