Sweet mung bean porridge, also known as pachai payaru kanji in Tamil, is a dish that’s perfect for colder days. It’s warm, sweet and incredibly satisfying. This mung bean porridge recipe only requires a handful of ingredients and is super easy to whip up. Mung beans are highly nutritious and this is a great way to enjoy a healthy, protein-packed dessert.
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About pachai payaru kanji
Mung beans, also known as green gram, green moong dal, whole moong dal, or pachai payaru in Tamil, is the star of this dish. While there are many variations of this porridge, it is typically flavored with pandan leaves, coconut milk, and sugar. Pandan leaves provide a lovely aromatic fragrance while coconut milk makes this porridge rich and oh-so creamy.
Growing up, this was a staple in my South Indian home. Amma often made this for teatime and to be honest, I used to groan whenever she made it! I often preferred other sweet treats like brownies and pancakes compared to our traditional whole moong porridge.
Now, as an adult in the thirties, I have newfound respect and love for this humble dish. It’s sweet, comforting, and a spoonful of this creamy pachai payaru kanji always brings me back to my childhood. It’s incredible how our palettes grow and change as we get older.
If you didn’t like mung beans as a kid, I implore you to give it another try, especially in the form of this amazingly creamy and sweet porridge. You might just find that you like mung beans after all!
Why you’ll love pachai payaru kanji
You’re going to love this mung bean porridge recipe with coconut milk! Here’s why:
- It’s perfect for cold winter days. When it’s cold outside, nothing beats a bowl of warm, sweet porridge! This porridge will warm you up and leave a smile on your face for sure!
- It’s budget-friendly. This recipe only requires a handful of ingredients, all of which are pretty affordable. If pandan leaves are hard to come by or expensive where you live, you can opt for pandan extract instead.
- It requires just a few pantry staples. Dried mung beans and canned coconut milk have a relatively long shelf life. You can store these items in your pantry and whip up this dish anytime you’re craving something sweet!
- It’s super easy to make. This is one of my go-to comfort foods because it’s so easy to make! You don’t need a pressure cooker to make this dish. Just cook the soaked mung beans in water over the stove for 20 minutes, pop in a few ingredients, and you’re done! This moong dal without pressure cooker is really that simple!
Pachai payaru kanji ingredients
Here’s what you’ll need to make this moong dal porridge:
- Mung beans. For this recipe that serves 3 – 4 people, I use one cup of mung beans. I soak them for 8 hours overnight before cooking to reduce the cooking time.
- Pandan leaves. This is a common ingredient in Asian cooking, often used to add a sweet, fragrant flavor to dishes. Just tie the pandan leaf into a knot and throw it into the pot as the mung beans are cooking. If you can’t find pandan leaves, you can use pandan extract instead.
- Coconut milk. This adds a rich, creamy flavor to the sweet mung bean porridge. Add it towards the end and keep the heat low to prevent the coconut milk from splitting.
- Brown sugar. This is a personal preference as we use brown sugar at home. Feel free to substitute with a sweetener of your choice, for e.g. white sugar or jaggery.
- Salt. As with most sweet dishes, you want to add a pinch of salt to this porridge to enhance its flavor.
How to make green gram porridge recipe
Here are step-by-step instructions on how to make sweet green gram kanji:
1. Soak the mung beans.
You’ll want to soak the beans for 8 hours overnight. Before cooking, drain the soaking water and rinse the beans thoroughly. If you forget to soak the beans, you can use the hot soak method, i.e. boil your mung beans and let them soak in the hot water for an hour before cooking.
2. Tie the pandan leaf into a knot.
Fresh pandan leaves are best for this. You can get them at your local Asian grocery store. If you can’t find fresh ones, use pandan extract instead.
3. Cook the mung beans for 20 minutes.
Add the mung beans, water, salt and the pandan knots into a pot. Heat on high heat until the mixture comes to a boil. Use a spoon to skim any foam off the top. Once it boils, lower the heat to a simmer and cook the mung beans (uncovered) for 20 minutes, stirring every now and then.
4. Add the remaining ingredients.
Add the coconut milk and stir it through before adding the brown sugar. Start with 1 cup of sugar first. Stir and cook for 1 – 2 minutes until the sugar dissolves.
5. Serve the pachai payaru kanji.
Taste and add more sugar if you prefer. Fish out the pandan knots before serving hot.
How to serve pachai payaru kanji
This sweet porridge is best served hot. In my family, this porridge is usually served at teatime along with a nice cup of chai. We keep a big pot on the dining table, family style, and everyone takes as much as they want. My husband and I always go in for seconds!
Here are some other teatime dishes that you can enjoy with your cuppa:
How to store leftover pachai payaru kanji
I love making a large batch of this sweet green gram porridge and having the leftovers for breakfast the next day! Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 1 – 2 days. Reheat in the microwave until warmed through before serving.
Other dal recipes you can try
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does dal take to cook without pressure cooker?
This depends on the type of dal, but on average, dal that has been soaked takes about 20 – 30 minutes to cook without pressure cooker.
How long does green moong dal take to cook?
Green moon dal takes about 15 minutes to cook in a pressure cooker. Without pressure cooker, green moong dal that has been soaked overnight takes about 20 – 25 minutes to cook.
What food can be made from green gram?
Green gram can be used to make a variety of dishes including curries, stews, soups, and sweet porridge. They can also be sprouted and added to salads.
Do mung beans need to be soaked before cooking?
While soaking is not a must, it definitely helps to reduce the cooking time, especially when cooking without a pressure cooker. Soaking also helps to increase the body’s ability to absorb minerals and proteins found in mung beans.
How long to soak mung beans before cooking?
Soak your mung beans for 8 – 10 hours before cooking. This reduces the cooking time of the beans, especially if you’re cooking them without a pressure cooker.
How long is too long to soak mung beans?
You’ll want to soak your beans for 8 – 10 hours overnight. Avoid soaking them for more than 12 hours as they can start to lose some flavor and become mushy.
What if I forgot to soak my beans overnight?
If you forget to soak your beans overnight before cooking, use the hot soak method instead. Cover your beans with water and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and let your beans soak in the hot water for one hour. After that, drain the water, rinse your beans, and proceed to cook them as you usually would.
Do you have to rinse beans after soaking?
Yes, it’s best to drain and rinse your beans thoroughly after soaking. When you soak beans, tannins and polyphenols from the beans are released into the water. These compounds can reduce the body’s ability to absorb the various minerals found in beans. As such, discarding the soaking water and rinsing your beans ensures that these compounds are removed before cooking.
Pachai Payaru Kanji | Sweet Mung Bean Porridge
- 1 cup mung beans
- 3½ cups water
- 1 pandan leaf
- ½ cup coconut milk
- 1 –1¼ cups brown sugar
- A pinch of salt
- Soak the mung beans overnight, about 8 hours or so.
- Drain the mung beans and give them a rinse. Set aside.
- Tie the pandan leaf into a knot.
- Add the mung beans, water, salt and the pandan knotsinto a pot. Heat on high heat until the mixture comes to a boil. Use a spoon toskim any foam off the top.
- Once it boils, lower the heat to a simmer and cook the mung beans (uncovered) for 20 minutes, stirring every now and then.
- Add the coconut milk and stir it through before adding the brown sugar. Start with 1 cup of sugar first. Stir and cook for 1 – 2 minutes until the sugar dissolves.
- Taste and add more sugar if you prefer. Fish out the pandan knots before serving hot.
This green gram porridge recipe is so quick and easy to make! Perfect for cold weather, this warm and comforting dish is sure to warm you up instantly. Made with just a few humble ingredients, this sweet porridge feels like a hug in a bowl.
Even if you hated mung beans as a child, trust me and give this a try. I used to groan at the sight of this porridge, but now, I can’t think of anything more comforting to have for dessert! Give this pachai payaru kanji recipe a try today!