Most times, I don’t really need a special occasion to make something special or to treat myself or the family. It is when I feel like making something or eating something that I make and eat! It could be a simple toast and fried egg or an elaborate meal with dessert and such. When it comes to desserts in the Indian category, my go to desserts are payasams (milk pudding with rice or vermicelli) or a kesari (a thicker pudding of sorts with semolina or vermicelli, sweetened with sugar and made rich with lot of ghee). On occasions, I do try to make the kind of payasams I like the most – the kinds with jaggery instead of sugar for sweetening and coconut milk as the base instead of milk. But AJ falls into the milk pudding category and it is easier to make something that both of us like. Otherwise, I end up eating all of it and it is not good for me. Seriously. My waist line hate it!
So here is the recipe for Paal payasam which is a very common payasam served in Sadyas ( the kerala feast). You can find recipes of more dishes that are served in a sadya here.
Paal Payasam ~ Rice Pudding with Milk – The recipe
- ¼ cup – Unakkalari / Raw Red Rice (Or use broken Rose Matta Rice if you don’t get raw red rice, or worse case, use basmati rice (it just wont be the same with basmati rice though))
- 2 ½ cups – Whole Milk
- ¾ cup – Sugar
- 2 tsp – Ground cardamom
Wash the rice well. Add the rice, milk and sugar to a pressure cooker and cook for one whistle. Lower the heat and let it simmer for 10-15 mins more, with the pressure weight still on. You wont hear any more whistles as the heat is on low.
Switch off the heat and wait for 20 mins or so till the pressure lets go. You can test by gently lifting the pressure weight. It is still whistles, the pressure is not gone completely.
Check for sweetness. Add more sugar if you want and more milk if you want the consistency thinner. If you are adding more milk or sugar, cook in the cooker pan on the stove top till the milk boils once more. Keep stirring to make sure it does not stick to the bottom or burn.
Add the ground cardamom. Serve hot or cold.