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Monday, August 31, 2020

Thena (Thinai) Pradhaman | Foxtail Payasam (Kheer) ~ Step by Step Pics

Wishing all my dear friends a Happy Onam !!
This year Onam in Kerala is a cautious and caring one in view of Covid -19 just like all other festivals that crossed so far. Anyways let's hope that things return to normalcy soon and we can move around more freely esp children. So we have no guests this year and so its a silent Onam like without much happenings except for the usual sadya.I made a small sadya for uthradam and thena pradhaman was the highlight of yesterday. Thena (foxtail millet) is a nutritious millet highly beneficial for diabetics. The magnesium in this millet helps to increase insulin secretion and thereby reducing sugar levels..An essential amino acid called 'lysine' is found in this millet which otherwise is not produced in the body. The high antioxidant activity flushes out acidity in the body. Thena is also rich in copper, zinc, calcium, magnesium and iron mineral which helps boost immunity. It is rich in calcium and is easily digestible.

Let me be honest here, I was tasting thena pradhaman for the first time. I have prepared kanji earlier with this millet which is also healthy. Foxtail millet was introduced to me from the blogosphere. I saw many of my friends using many millets. The only millet I knew was finger millet or ragi until I started adding other millets to our staples. I use barnyard millet to make idlis and dosas. These days millets are easily available in super market aisles and can be bought.

Pradhaman and payasam are the highlight of any sadya. As far as my understanding goes, pradhaman is thick and rich and is double cooked unlike the payasam which is single cooked. Double cooked means cooking the grains or fruits first and then adding to make payasam. Payasams like vermicelli is made directly in the boiled milk. Coming back to today's pradhaman, tastes delicious and is rich in coconut milk flavors. The cooked thena looks and tastes similar to nuruku gothambu or mulayari pradhaman. The only tedious job that I felt when cooking the thena is that you need to remove the husk and then use. But if you get cleaned foxtail millet then this work is easier. If you get a chance to try this out, always go ahead and give this pradhaman a try and enjoy.

Preparation time ~ 15 minutes
Cooking time ~ 30 minutes
Author ~ Julie
Serves ~ 7-8 bowls
*thena (thinai/ foxtail) millet 2 cups (refer notes)
cherupayar / whole moong dal 1/4 cup
jaggery 2.5 cups grated
cardamom powder/ elakka podi 3/4 tsp
ghee 2tbsp + 1 tbsp
cashews 2tbsp
raisins 2 tbsp

Look for stones, sticks and other impurities in thena. Then add a tbsp of water to the thena and keep for 5 minutes. Add this thena to a blender jar and pulse 3-4 times till the husk is removed. Now transfer this to a plate or moram and shake to separate the husk and gently blew the husk portion. It may be easy to remove the husk then. If you still feel there are more husk then repeat the procedure by adding few drops of water and pulsing in blender. I referred this video here to remove the husk from thena. Though I took 2 cups of thena before cleaning and got only a cup after cleaning.Rinse the thena completely under running water thrice to remove any husk remaining and other dirt.

In another pan add the whole moong dal and fry roasted for two mins. Then add this to a blender jar and pulse 2-3 times till the dal look separated and outer skin is removed slightly. Rinse this dal under running waterfor 2-3 times till the outer skin is washed off.

Mix both dal and thena together, add to a cooker and add water 2.5 cups (each cup of thena needs 2 cups of water to cook). Pressure cook this for 2 whistles. Switch off flame.
In the meantime, dissolve the jaggery in a cup of water and strain the impurities. Keep aside. Similarly extract the coconut milk from grated coconut or if using canned coconut milk, then dilute the coconut milk accordingly and keep aside.

Heat 2 tbsp ghee in a heavy bottomed pan. Now transfer the cooked mix to this and fry the cooked mix for 2 minutes. Then add the jaggery syrup and mix well. Let the jaggery syrup get reduced a bit  and then add the third coconut milk and cook on low flame. Stir in between and then continue too coo  till its reduced completely.At this point add the second coconut milk. Continue stirring at this point and make a point to stir at the bottom of the pan so that it doesnt;t stick to the bottom of the pan.

It may take 15-20 minutes to get the thick consistency. Add the chukku podi, cumin powder and elakka podi. Mix well without any lumps. Finally, add the first coconut milk and mix well. Wait till one or two bubbles appear at the surface and switch off flame.

In another pan, heat the 1tbsp ghee and fry the cashews and raisins. Pour this over the prepared pradhaman. Enjoy warm or cold as preferred. We love it at room temperature.

*If you are using cleaned foxtail millet then use only 1 cup for this measures.
*If you don't know, what's first second and third coconut milk then refer this post here.
* Refer this post here to make your own chukku podi and cumin powder.


Angie's Recipes said... Best Blogger Tips

This is new to me...wish I could taste some of yours...looks so good!

Suja Manoj said... Best Blogger Tips

Happy Onam Julie...yummy payasam