Festive Treats

Parappu Payasam | Lentil Kheer

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Parappu payasam is a rich and very luscious South Indian dessert made with moong dal, coconut milk, and dry fruits which is perfect for any festive occasion. It is predominantly prepared during the festival of Onam in the state of Kerala.
Making the Parappu payasam is easy, but one thing that you need to keep attention to is the consistency of cooking the lentils. Once you get that right, the rest of the recipe is simple.

I follow the recipe as my grandmother and my mother would make by taking the equal quantity of chana dal and moong dal to add texture to the payasam rather than having just a smooth paste. To enhance the sweetness and the golden colour to the dessert, I prefer adding jaggery instead of refined sugar. The coconut milk adds a creamy taste to the dish. A pinch of crushed cardamom and the small chunks of fried cashews and coconut in the ghee make it taste even more heavenly.
Serves – 4
1/2 cup moong dal
1/2 cup chana dal
1 cup jaggery
1/2 cup coconut milk 
Cardamom powder
Cashews and some sliced coconut for garnish

  1. First, dry roast the moong dal until you get a nice aroma. Then set aside to cool.
  2. Then dry roast the chana dal until you have the aroma and set aside to cool.
  3. Add both the lentils in a pressure cooker, pour 2.5 cups of water and cook for 2 whistles.
  4. In a separate vessel add 1 cup water and the jaggery. Bring it to a boil and keep stirring until the jaggery melts. Once melted remove from the flame and set aside.
  5. Check the cooked lentils and mash a little.
  6. Then strain the jaggery water into the cooked lentils. 
  7. Allow it to boil, then simmer and cook for 8-10 mins. Do not put a lid on it. You can add water if the mixture is too thick as it will thicken when it gets cool.
  8. Once you have the desired consistency and sweetness, slowly add coconut milk. Mix everything well. Remove from the flame and set aside.
  9. Garnish with fried cashews and fried coconut chunks to add crunchiness to the dish.  
  • When moong dal and chana dal are added in the pressure cooker the moong dal would get completely mashed, whereas chana dal won’t. So, keep it the same, as it will add the texture to the smooth moong dal paste.
  • Straining the jaggery water into the lentils mix is necessary because there can be some unwanted particles that can ruin the dish.
  • After adding coconut milk the dish will change the colour.
Fry the cashews and coconut chunks in the ghee.

Did you make this recipe?
Please let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #thefitdotme

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