Sweet Poha/Vella Aval

25 mins
Serves 4 people
Author: Rajni Ram
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This recipe of the humble Poha(beaten rice flakes)/Aval cooked  in Jaggery syrup is one of my favourites.  I make it whenever I have a sweet craving or as an offering(Prasad) for Pujas at home. Healthy and filling at the same time. It makes for a good mid-evening snack(Tiffin) option. Sometimes I make with a combination of other Pohe recipes, to serve during Navarathri when guests visit home.

Poha is also one of the main offerings during Janmashtami and Ganesh Chaturthi. Lord Krishna is known to have loved them and Pohe is what his friend Sudama got him as a gift.

Usually, during these two festivals, people just offer the Pohe and jaggery with coconut scraping as a dry mixture for Prasad. I have observed that though there are few who like it this way, many don’t enjoy it dry. So what I prefer doing is putting it in a jaggery syrup and stirring it dry, with a dash of ghee, cardamom powder and coconut scrapings it tastes just like Sweet Pongal, but it is dry in texture.

There are many variations of the Pohe like Kanda Poha(onion Poha), Masala Poha(tomatoes and onions), Lemon Poha, Puli Aval(tamarind Poha), Vella Aval(Sweet Poha) and  Dahi Pohe/Moru Aval. The Poha can be either thick or thin. For this recipe, I have used the thin one, but the same can be done with the thick one too, just that the soak time will vary. Thick Poha is used for recipes where the Poha is going to cook in a sauce so that it doesn’t become soggy. The Sweet Pohe makes for a good and healthy recipe for kids too.

While you are here please visit my other Indian sweet recipes such as Atte ka Sheera, Sugiyan, Carrot Kheer, and Pineapple Rabri and more…

This Janmashtami or Ganesh Chaturthi try out this recipe of Sweet Poha or Vella Aval.

Ingredients

Ingredients

  1. Poha/Aval( Thin ) 1 cup
  2. Jaggery 1 cup
  3. Coconut gratings 1 tbsp
  4. Ghee 1tbsp
  5. Cardamom powder 1/2 tsp
  6. Cashewnuts around 5 broken to bits
  7. Raisins around 8
  1. Assemble all ingredients. Powder the jaggery and cardamom and keep ready. Break the Cashewnuts to bits.
  2. Sieve, wash the Poha twice drain the water and let it rest for 10 minutes.
  3. Now in a thick bottomed vessel put in the jaggery, add 1/4 cup water and switch on the flame. Stirring continuously dissolve the jaggery. The syrup should cook for 2 minutes on low flame.
  4. Now strain this syrup into the Kadai or pan in which you are going to make the Poha. Add a teaspoon of sugar. Add the washed and soaked Poha to the syrup in the Kadai, and switch on the flame. Start stirring and cooking this mixture until the jaggery syrup coats the poha well. Continue to stir until the moisture dries up and the Poha is almost dry. Add the cardamom powder and switch off the flame.
  5. In a small tadka, Kadai dry roast the grated coconut gratings until light brown. One has to stir continuously as the coconut will burn if left unattended. Add the roasted coconut to the Sweet Poha and mix well.
  6. 6. Now in the same Kadai, the coconut was roasted, add the ghee and fry the nuts and raisins. Put this into the Sweet Poha. The dish is now ready to offer for Puja or to serve guests.
Pass the Poha through a sieve that has medium-sized perforations, such that the Poha remains in the sieve and the dust and small flakes fall away. Now wash the Poha just once(may become soggy if done more than once)and drain all the water. Let the Poha rest for 10 minutes.
In a thick bottomed vessel put in the jaggery and 1/4 cup water and place it on the flame. Stirring continuously dissolve the jaggery. The syrup should boil for about 2 minutes. Now strain this syrup into a Kadai or thick bottomed pan and add a teaspoon of sugar and add the washed Poha. Turn on the flame and mix the jaggery and Poha well, such that the jaggery syrup has evenly coated the poha. Cook on low flame until all the moisture is absorbed. Now add the cardamom powder and put off the flame. In a small tadka, Kadai heat the ghee and fry the nuts and raisins and drop them into the Sweet Poha and give it a stir. The Sweet Poha/Vella Aval is ready to offer as Prasad or to your guests. This can be made ahead and warmed just before you serve. Enjoy.

Notes:

  1. If using thick Poha there is no need to sieve the Poha, just wash it around 3 times and then rest it for 10 minutes.
  2. Sometimes this recipe I also made by soaking the poha in jaggery water, but I personally do not recommend this as the dish does not last long. The jaggery water is not cooked like unlike the recipe above, so the chances are the Poha will give out a fermented smell in a short time.
  3. Since in this recipe, I have boiled the jaggery and made a syrup the Poha can be made ahead, if you have made extra, it can be put in the refrigerator and warmed up the next day. So this method stays good longer.
  4. Adding a teaspoon or two of sugar accentuates the taste of jaggery. I always follow this in my jaggery based recipes.
  5. More grated coconut can be added if you like the flavour.

If you tried this recipe and liked it please comment below. I would love to hear from you.

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