Pongal special: Seven harvest inspired creations that you never thought were possible!
Sip, slurp, burp. That’s what you’re going to be doing after getting a taste of this sweet ride. We asked chefs to roll out their most inspired Pongal creations, reimagining harvest staples in new and novel avatars.
Dive your spoon into this novel combination of fresh sugarcane juice and ginger extract, laced in vanilla mousse. This dessert is eggless and so, makes the perfect harvest dessert for the vegan soul. There’s also an orange mousse for a hit of fruity zest, if you prefer. At Taj Coromandel, La Patisserie. On January 15. Available on request. INR 325 all-inclusive.
Raisin the roof!
Sip on this delicious mocktail of pineapple juice, jaggery syrup, fresh lime juice, and to elevate the experience, a dash of cardamom and raisins. At KooX, Novotel Chennai Chamiers Road. Available between January 13 to 16. INR 750 nett.
Love me tender
You’re going to love this Pongal-inspired detox beverage. Expect a tall glass of tender coconut water, with a swirl of honey, mint leaves for a refresher and granules of jaggery — all shaken together and served on ice. At Vintage Bank and Vasco’s, Hilton Chennai. January 14 to 17. INR 350 including taxes.
Vermicelli in a martini glass
We look forward to the spree of Pongal-inspired creations served up by Bay 146 ever year. This time around, we have our eye on this one pot dessert in a martini glass — sip on a lip-smacking concoction butterscotch ice cream, cream, palm sugar, roasted vermicelli and raisins for garnish. INR 150. And for one with sugarcane juice, opt for the Ox and Cane mocktail with sugarcane juice, lime juice, fried cashewnuts and a pretty Marigold flower on top for floral flourish. At Savera hotel. INR 275. Available from today to January 17.
A lot like loaf
Senthil Kumar of Wholesome Rhapsody recently introduced low-glycemic bakes, made with traditional grains through Tamil Nadu. He primarily uses black rice (which has 23 types of antioxidants) and red rice (a great source or iron and calcium). Look out for the Forbidden Fruit Loaf (vegan black rice almond chocolate loaf with drupe fruits), a Red Rice Coconut Cookie and a Black Rice Black Bean Chocolate Brownie! INR 160 upwards.
Pongal-inspired chocolate is not hard to come by if you know where to look. Sample this Chocolate-Dipped Adhirasam with sakkarai pongal-flavoured ice cream (below) at Anise, Taj Coromandel. On request. INR 675. Or how about a limited edition 70 per cent bean to bar dark chocolate (left), with rice crispies, topped with coconut chips, raisins and sweetened with jaggery. At Kocoatrait, INR 235 per bar.
Enjoy the lentil things
This is a first. Chocolate Pongal Teppanyaki, anyone? Prepared with smashed rice and lentils cooked in an earthen pot, sweetened with chocolate, jaggery and flavoured with cardamom, this creation is enriched with clarified butter, cashewnuts and raisins. Available as part of the Pongal lunch buffet at Spice Haat, Hyatt Regency Chennai. On January 15. Buffet priced at INR 1,450 plus taxes per person.