Quinoa Sweet Sakara Pongal

For the health conscious sweet toothed friends out there, here is a slight variation on the traditional sweet Pongal! Can’t claim that it is any  less calorific, but I can assure you that the taste hits the spot always!

Quinoa, Moong Dal, Milk, Jaggery, Cardamom powder, Ghee, Cashew nut pieces.

1. Heat 1 tsp of ghee in a wok and add 1 cup of quinoa in it and toast lightly till the kernels get light brown.
2. Transfer the toasted quinoa to a rice cooker* and add ½ cup of moong dal.
3. Heat up a cup of whole milk in a pan till it starts to boil. Turn off the heat and add this to the quinoa/dal mix.
4. Add 4 cups of water, mix everything well and turn on the rice cooker and cook till the quinoa and the dal is really soft.
5. Add 1.5 cups of jaggery to the wok and add just a little water to help it to melt. Keep stirring till the jaggery melts. Lower the heat and allow it to thicken and cook till you get a strand on pinching a small amount between your index and thumb fingers.
6. Add 1 heaped teaspoon of cardamom powder and mix well.
7. Slowly add the cooked quinoa-dal mixture and gently fold it into the thick jaggery syrup.
8. Turn up the heat and allow everything to cook and stir periodically to ensure that it doesn’t burn. Turn off the heat.
9. In a small pan, heat up 2 tablespoons of ghee, add a handful of broken cashews and saute till they get a light brown hue. Pour this on top of the sweet pongal.
10. Serve piping hot!
* You can also cook it in a pressure cooker and allow enough time for the quinoa and moong dal to cook down to a mush 

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