Friday, December 6, 2013

Phirni / Rice Pudding



About Phirni:

Kheer/Phirni is a South Asian rice pudding made by boiling rice or broken wheat with milk and sugar; it is flavoured with cardamom,raisinssaffroncashew nutspistachios or almonds. It is typically served during a meal or as a dessert.
The Sanskrit name is क्षीर/Ksheer. In Hindi, खीर; Punjabi, کھیر/ਖੀਰ; Khiri (ଖିରି) in OriyaSindhi: کھیر; Urdu کھیر/kheer in Nepaliखिर, also known as Payasam (Tamil: பாயசம்,), Payasa or Payesh Bengali.
Kheer is prepared in festivals, temples, and all special occasions. The term Kheer (used in North India) is derived from Sanskritwords Ksheeram(which means milk). Other terms like Payasa or Payasam (used in South India) or payesh (used in Bengalregion) are derived from the Sanskrit word Payas which also means "milk". It is prepared using milkrice, ghee, sugar/jaggery,Khoya. Some also add a little bit of heavy cream for a richer taste. It is often garnished using almonds, cashews, raisins and pistachios.
It is an essential dish in many Hindu feasts and celebrations. While the dish is most often made with rice, it can also be made with other ingredients such as vermicelli (seviyanseviyaansayviah, or other spellings).
Rice was known to the Romans, and possibly introduced to Europe as a food crop as early as the 8th or 10th century AD,and so the recipe for the popular English rice pudding is believed by some to be descended from kheer. Similar rice recipes (originally calledpotages) go back to some of the earliest written recipes in English history.

Ingredients:

•Rice,soaked-5 tablespoons
•Milk - 1 litre / 4 cup
•Saffron (kesar)-a generous pinch
•Sugar-3/4 cup
•Green cardamom powder-1/2 teaspoon
•Pistachios,blanched, peeled and sliced-10 - 15

Method:

Drain and grind the rice to a coarse paste.
Bring milk to a boil.
Add rice paste dissolved in a little water or cold milk.
Cook till rice is completely cooked, stirring constantly.
Add saffron and mix well.
Add sugar and cardamom powder and cook till sugar is completely dissolved.
Pour into earthenware or china bowls and garnish with pistachios.
Chill in a refrigerator for an hour before serving.

Tip:

It is a good idea to grind green cardamom with a little sugar as otherwise the quantity of green cardamom may be too little to grind. You can store this in an airtight jar for use in sweet dishes and desserts.

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