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Nei Payasam
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Nei Payasam | How to make Sharkara Payasam

Nei Payasam is a special payasam made with Unakkalari, jaggery and ghee and served during festival occasions in Kerala Temples.
Course Sweets
Cuisine Kerala
Keyword Sweet Pongal Kerala Style
By Cook Method Pressure Cooker
Occasion Festival Meal
By Diet Vegetarian
Dish Type Pongal Recipes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 2 people
Author Srivalli


  • 1/2 cup Basmati Rice / Unakkalari
  • 4 tbsp Ghee
  • 1 cup Jaggery
  • 3 cups Water
  • 1/4 cup Coconut grated
  • 1/4 tsp Cardamom Powder
  • A Pinch Dry Ginger Powder
  • Handful Cashew Nuts


How to make Sharkara Payasam | Nei Payasam

  • Soak jaggery in 1 cup of warm water and then crush it well.
  • Then, heat it up until it is slightly thick. Cool down, strain and keep aside. You don't have to check for string consistency.
  • Wash and soak the rice. Add 2 cups water and pressure cook for 3 whistles. Rice should be cooked till soft but not mushy as we want the grains to be seen.
  • Measure and add jaggery syrup.
  • Mix well and cook in low flame till the jaggery syrup blends well with the rice. Once this is done, add grated coconut.
  • Mix well and cook for 2 mins, then add ghee little by little.
  • Keep mixing, at one stage the payasam will get thick and saucy in consistency. Add roasted cashews, cardamom powder, dry ginger powder and switch off.
  • Serve hot.


Don’t cook this payasam very thick as it will harden further after cooling down.
The consistency is more like sweet pongal. Unakkalari is a special type of Kerala Raw Rice which gives a unique flavour to the payasam. Since I didn't have, I used Basmati.
If required, you can cook the jaggery to a thick one string thread as well. The color of the payasam depends totally on the jaggery color.
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