Little M had the pleasure of "yellu birodu" this Sankranthi. That is a custom where young girls visit close relatives, friends and neighbors with a Sankranti offering of yellu bella (a mixture containing sesame seeds, jaggery, copra, dalia and roasted peanuts), sugarcane, sakkare achchu (moulded sugar candy) and fruit. I would have loved to see her wear something traditional but she is a t-shirt & pants/shorts kinda girl and getting her to wear anything else is a battle I chose not to fight this time. It was great to see her all excited and feeling really important carrying the plate with the offerings :)
Huggi is a dish that is prepared on the day of Makara Sankranthi and is usually served with a sour gojju (curry) or a majjige huli (kadhi). Made similar to Pongal, it also has a sweet (called sakkare pongal) and a savory variation, both or either of which are prepared that day. Avarekayi (flat beans) still being in season, Mom made the savory version with lots of avarekalu in it.
1 cup rice
1/2 cup split moong dal
1 cup avarekayi/flat beans (optional)
1 green chili
1 tsp cumin & black pepper, coarsely ground together
1” ginger, grated
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp copra
cashews for garnish
salt to taste
For the tadka:
2 tbsp ghee/oil
1 tsp cumin & black pepper, coarse ground
1-2 red chilies, broken
1 sprig curry leaves
Wash rice. Roast Moong dal for a couple minutes.
In a pressure cooker, heat ghee/oil and do the tadka. Then add copra and fry for a few seconds.
Add rice, moong dal, avarekayi(if using), green chili, cumin/pepper powder, ginger, salt and haldi. Mix well.
Add 5 cups of water. Cover the cooker and cook until soft.
Allow cooker to release pressure.
Fry some cashews in a little bit of oil to use as garnish.
Serve with ghee and gojju or majjige huli.