Kheer or Payasam Recipe - an Indian dessert recipe
Kheer is a very popular dessert in northern India. It is also called "payasam" in southern India.
To make a kheer is really no big deal, it is a very easy dessert. The taste is REALLY GOOD. I think it is the combination of flavors from green cardamoms and pistachios. They both compliment each other so well in this recipe. Of course, thickened milk with just sugar will also taste too good. So imagine how good it will be if you add a few flavors. Hmnnnn wicked.
The five basic ingredients required are rice, milk, sugar, green cardamom and pistachios.
After this it is your choice to add more dry fruits and nuts. The more the merrier.
For this kheer recipe you will need
- 1 lt milk (which is 4 cups. Whole is good but you can use skimmed)
- 50 gm rice (any short grain or any rice. Washed and drained)
- 6-7 Tbsp sugar or more (use palm or brown sugar for a distinct flavor or white is absolutely fine)
- 4-5 green Cardamoms (remove seeds and powder them in a pestle and mortar or by using a rolling pin)
- 4-5 Tbsp Pistachios (use as many you want - slice a few and pound or grate the rest)
- 4-5 Tbsp Raisins
- 3-4 Tbsp Almonds (blanched, peeled and chopper or sliced)
- 2 Tbsp Cashews (Chopped)
In a heavy bottom, non stick pan or kadai, add the rice and milk. Bring it to a boil and then simmer, till the milk is reduced to half. Stir occasionally to prevent the milk from sticking at the bottom of the pan. If it does stick, it will burn and if that happens you will have no other choice but to throw it away. So keep a good watch. The lower the flame, the better it is. Remember that patience is a virtue.
When nearly done add the sugar and rest of the ingredients. Sneak a taste and adjust the sugar. Save the sliced pistachios and some other dry fruits for garnishing.
Just check if the rice grain is cooked (it should be by now).
Transfer in a serving bowl and garnish with pistachios.
That's it!!! You can serve this hot if you want. But if you have the patience, then serve it chill. It will taste more awesome.
Variation and Tips
You can use saffron (kesar), instead of green cardamom. This will give your kheer a different flavor and yellow color. Just add a few strands in 1/4 cup warm milk and use this milk with the rest. You can also drop a few additional strands while cooking.
Try to use a short grain (tough to cook) rice. Basmati will cook quickly and then start to break.
Do not add a lot of rice (uncooked) in the milk. The rice will absorb a lot of milk. Moreover your kheer will thicken more as it cools down.
If you don't have the time and patience to wait for the milk to thicken, you can do a little bit of cheating. Use a little condensed milk with the regular milk. This will benefit both the taste and texture. Please use little at a time and add more if required. DON'T use any sugar if using sweet condensed milk.
You can go for flavors like rose water or kewra in your kheer. Add a Tbsp of rose water when cooked or 1 tsp of kewra essence.
If you happen to have some leftover plain boiled rice, use it to make kheer.
Try not to use all flavors at once. You will not be able to enjoy any.
Kheer recipe to some savory rice recipes
If you are still in a mood for something sweet, here are some more Indian dessert recipes
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