Now serving Pongal platters

Giving you a break from your kitchen this Pongal, home chefs & homegrown brands have curated a sumptuous south and north Indian fare to celebrate the harvest festival.

Published: 12th January 2021 06:43 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th January 2021 06:43 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

CHENNAI: Giving you a break from your kitchen this Pongal, home chefs & homegrown brands have curated a sumptuous south and north Indian fare to celebrate the harvest festival.Kannalmozhi Kabilan and Roshne Balasubramanian present some lipsmacking options

If you are planning to full kattu, Idlies Pongal Sirappu Pettagam might just interest you. From ven pongal, rasam, mor kozhambu to thaalagam, this special lunch menu will leave you craving for more. The meal for two will also include dishes like sakkarai pongal (packed in mini pots), rice, aviyal, beans paruppu usili, puli sadham, vadai, thayir, manga oorga and applam. “Pongal is a festival that unites to celebrate the sun. What better way to pay gratitude to the sun than by thanking nature and sharing with one and all the food he nurtures and enriches! Idlies brings in a delectable spread,” says Umesh Vaidyanathan, founder of Idlies. The menu will be available in both Ashok Nagar and Nanganallur branches.

 Orders will be taken until 7 pm today.  
 Price: Rs 260 per box
 For details, call: 6382716990/ 9003760307 

FoodFully, an aggregate platform that offers you the ideal avenue to reach a wide range of home chefs and bakers in the city, is not sitting this out either. There’s plenty on the cards, says co-founder Ramki Ravi. He vouches for the staples that many of their chefs are making — a full south Indian meal and all types of variety rice; savouries like butter murukku, kaara boondhi and ribbon pakoda; and sakkara pongal, gulab jamun and payasam. But, it’s the off-brand items that you have to look out for, he suggests. “Our chefs are making a variety of unique dishes like bottlegourd kheer, bottlegourd halwa, kova samosa, dates coconut barfi, caramel rava pudding, sago jelly custard, baklava, masala khaja and more,” he lists. Besides these offerings, he suggests that you check out their website and you’re likely to find what you’re looking for this festival season. As with most home chefs, he suggests that an advance order would work best. For, all the food is freshly prepared based on orders. “Our chefs do not use artificial flavours or preservatives. All the food is home-cooked. And it’s customisable — natural sweeteners, sugar-free or specific millet preference, etc.,” he details. 

 For more details, visit website: or call/WhatsApp: 9940193133
 Price: On request

Raghav’s Lunch Box
The aroma of tempered spices and melted ghee wafts through Veera Raghavan’s kitchen in Korattur. On the sidelines, the entrepreneur, who launched Raghav’s Lunch Box over two years ago, diligently chalks his Pongal menu, to serve his patrons with lip-smacking and nutritious food during the harvest festival. The menu reads: ‘Thinai pongal, sakkarai pongal, seven vegetables kozhambu, pineapple sathumithu (rasam), chow chow kootu, beans coconut poriyal, medhu vadai and white rice’, leaving us ravenous. “This will be a combo meal, which can be ordered with or without the white rice. The served quantity will easily suffice one to two persons,” he says. In the line-up, be it the jaggery doused sakkarai pongal or the peppery millet variant of ven pongal, everything will be made with authentic ingredients with utmost care, he assures. “We wanted to add a healthier variant of pongal this time and decided to go with thinai pongal. Going forward, it will become a recurring dish on our breakfast menu and will be accompanied by millet dosa and ragi rava dosa,” he says. As they have kitchens across the city, the deliveries will begin by 8 am on January 14 and will reach homes before 12 pm.

 Orders can be placed till January 13, 9 pm, and will be delivered on January 14 before 12 pm.
 Price: Rs 150 (without rice) Rs 175 (with rice)
 For details, call: 9884533785

Uncle Sam’s Kitchen
Tapping on the goodness of nature’s bounty, Uncle Sam’s Kitchen has curated a menu that celebrates the culture and joys of the harvest season across different regions of the country. Be it the Pongalo Pongal pack with tender and spicy chicken chettinadu masala/paneer chettinad masala, urulai roast, keerai vadai, bissibillabath, kosambari vellari salad and sakkarai pongal; the Lohri Balliye pack with ghobi/murgh methi malai, chole amritsari, sarson ka saag, paneer khurchan, stuffed kulcha, kheer kesari, or the Po-Lo Mela pack with karuveppillai aloo/chicken, thayir vadai, paneer chettinad, idiyappam biryani, stuffed paratha and besan ka ladoo, every offering has something special for everyone. Besides the packs, the Kitchen also has interesting add-ons one can order from. Sugarcane juice, gajar gobhi shalgam achar, butter chicken, paneer makhani, besan ka laddoo and Delhi gajar halwa, are some. The menu is available for lunch and dinner until January 17. 

 Orders have to be placed a day in advance. Each pack will serve four people. 
 Price: The packs are priced at Rs 1,850 (meal for 4). The extras are priced from Rs 150 onwards.
 For details, visit Facebook page Uncle Sam’s Kitchen or call 9940659646/9677008892

Serve others exactly what we serve ourselves, and the rest will follow through’, is a motto that Maavadu, a home-made food delivery venture promoted by actor ‘Pyramid’ Natarajan, has followed since its inception in 2018. “This Pongal, Maavadu has decided to celebrate the harvest festival with a special Bogi menu on January 13. From poli, payasam, urulai curry, aviyal, murungai sambar, thakkali rasam and puliyodarai, to vadai, vadam, rice-curd and pickle, the scrumptious offering will leave you satiated. Everything is prepared at home with love and care,” shares a staff member. Maavadu’s kitchens are scrubbed clean twice a day, the cooks follow cleanliness and sanitation protocols and the vegetables and grains are 

 Orders must be placed today by 6 pm for January 13 delivery.
 Price: The combo (meal for two) is priced at Rs 330 (including packaging and delivery charges)
 For details, visit or call 044 40263646

Saayesh Kitchen 
Having started as a small-scale catering outfit two years ago, this is the first year that Poongodi Haridoss has Pongal specials on the menu. While limited, she has some must haves on offer — ilaneer pongal, poosanikai masiyal, avarakai poriyal, keerai koottu, vazhakai varuval and vallikizhangu varuval. There’s murukku, athirasam, mixture and thattai too. Besides these festive-time foods, she has a range of favourites coming out of her kitchen all year round; from ragi ladoo and somasev, to coconut podi and paruppu podi. 

 Place orders two days in advance and have it delivered right at your doorstep.
 Price: on request
 For more details, call: 8141855005 or 7305895311

Harshita Foods
Pongal season, like every other festive occasion, is a busy time for Harshita Foods run by Sunitha. Besides the made-to-order sweets and savouries, they make Pongal-special food as well. Time outside the kitchen pretty much comes to a standstill, it seems. “People who want to carry sweets to their hometown place their orders. We make all traditional sweets like Mysore pak, laddu, barfi, etc. On Pongal day, we’ll make the usual sakkara pongal, ven pongal, vadai, puran poli and payasam,” explains Sunitha. The highlight of the season is, however, Sunitha’s ‘7 kari kootu - spl kulambu’. It’s set to have seven different vegetables (as the name suggests) and fresh groundnut masala. “This is the most special dish we make on Pongal,” she reiterates. She recommends an advance order through WhatsApp, where she can confirm the portion size and prepare the food accordingly. Besides her staples, she would be happy to cater to lunch or dinner orders too.

 Orders close by end of day today.
 Price: On request
 For more details, WhatsApp: 9444991011

Parul’s Magic 
An assortment of seasonal vegetables – from papdi (green flat beans), sweet potatoes, purple yam (sourced from Gujarat), brinjal, raw banana to whatnots are peeled, cut and cooked together to make the undhiyu, a Gujarati speciality mixed vegetable dish. “To celebrate the Uttarayan/Makar Sankranti (the harvest festival of Gujarat) in Chennai, I decided to prepare some traditional dishes and offer it to those from the city,” says home chef and author Parul Bhatt. Along with this, Parul will also be preparing methi muthiyas (dumplings/fritters made with chickpea flour and fenugreek leaves with spices) and adding it to the undhiyu, to give it a rustic crunchiness. “I will also be adding fresh herbs, green chillies, garlic and lots of coriander,” she tells. The preparation of the dishes takes almost 24 hours and due to its laborious nature, Parul suggests that orders be placed well in advance. “From peeling, stuffing vegetables to grinding spices, it’s a multilayer process. Moreover, the mixture for the dishes are slow-cooked with oil and takes anything between three to four hours,” she explains. Parul will also be offering crunchy bites of fresh and flaky matar kachoris as part of the Uttarayan menu. 

 Orders to be placed before 12 pm on January 13. The dishes will be delivered within 48 hours by January 15.  
 Price: The undhiyu, muthiyas and kachoris are priced from Rs 200 onwards (minimum order of 250 grams).
 For details, visit Facebook page Parul’s Magic,or call 9841014925

Munch Health
Preeti, who has carved out a niche for herself in north Indian cuisine — Rajasthani, Gujarati and Punjabi, has vegetarian and vegan offerings from these lands for the Makar Sankranti festivities. “I’m looking out for these authentic Rajasthani dishes like ragi roti and a few sabzis that are traditionally made for Sankranti. There’s fresh, green lentils and koda ki sabzi. Dal baati churma is also a big hit,” she shares. Preeti’s menu is not without staples — be it the Rajasthani gujiya, mathri, paneer butter masala, pav bhaji, rasamalai and malpua. But, she goes a step further to ensure that every dish has her signature in it from start to finish. “As the name goes, it’s about 100 per cent health. I don’t use aluminium or non-stick; it’s only iron, earthenware and brass vessels for cooking. I don’t use refined oil. And when I say paneer butter masala, paneer is made at home; when I put pav bhaji on the menu, I should make sure that I can make pav that day and it’s also the non-yeast kind. When I say dal baati churma, I should make sure that I have the right flour and I don’t use readymade atta; I use khapli wheat. It’s that kind of a kitchen,” she elaborates. Usually, Preeti prepares a weekly menu and sends it out via WhatsApp.

 Orders are to be placed a day in advance. 
 Price: On request
 For more details, call or WhatsApp: 9150312794


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