Wash the rice and soak it in water for 10 minutes.
Pressure cook the rice with a little more than double the amount of water. Rice should be fully submerged.
Slightly overcook the rice so that when you press a rice bead between your thumb and index finger it should easily get smashed.
Add jaggery to a deep bottom pan or non stick deep bottom saucepan.
Use double the amount of jaggery (compared to the amount of rice). You could add more if you want to make your pradhaman sweeter.
Melt it to a thick sauce by stirring with a little water on the lowest flame setting. Make sure there are no lumps in it.
Bring to boil and switch off.
Strain the melted jaggery through a sieve to get rid of any stones that may be in the jaggery.
Add the cooked rice and jaggery sauce to a non stick deep bottom pan.
Add 1 tablespoon ghee and mix well.
Reduce the gas to medium flame setting and stir continuously so that the payasam does not stick to the bottom or sides of the pan nor burn.
Cook until most of the water content is reduced and the rice gets sticky and starts to come off the sides of the pan.
Add the thin coconut milk (2nd extract) mix well, and reduce the gas to medium flame setting. If you are using shop-bought coconut milk mix 1/2 cup coconut milk with 1 cup water for the thin coconut milk. Mix 1/2 cup coconut milk with 1/2 water for the thick coconut milk.
If you want your payasam to be really thick reduce it till it's almost dry or till you get a jammy consistency.
Heat 1 tablespoon ghee in a non stick pan and fry the coconut chips.
When the chips start turning brown add cashews and raisins.
Mix well and fry for one minute to golden brown.
Switch off and keep the chips cashews and raisins aside.
It's difficult to grind cardamom in small quantities. Grind cardamom with a bit of sugar in a mixer. (sugar is optional. If you do not like it too sweet do not add sugar because jaggery has enough sweetness to it)
Once the payasam reduces to the consistency you want add the thick coconut milk (1st extract) stir well, and cook for a couple more minutes stirring continuously so that the payasam does not stick to the bottom or sides of the pan nor burn.
You don't have to bring this to boil.
After a couple of minutes switch off garnish with the fried coconut chips, cashew, raisins, and cardamom powder.
Ideally pradhaman should be served on the same banana leaf towards the
end of the Onam sadya.
Alternatively you could serve it in mugs/glasses as well.
Since our payasam was of a jammy consistency we applied it on chapatis
and sliced bread and had it for breakfast.