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Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, so I thought why not share some beautiful and unusual sweets from around the world this week.
Instead of the typical chocolate fest for Valentine’s Day, how about an enchanting Indian-inspired meal?
I can envision the house filled with the magical fragrances of ginger, turmeric, cumin, cardamom, and saffron. A beautiful lentil dal garnished with fiery peppers, a cooling cucumber raita, and a rich and savory korma (curry) shared with soft pieces of fresh naan bread sounds divine to me! (And just happens to be a list of a few of the recipes from the India chapter of my upcoming cookbook! Wink, wink! 😉 )
While you’ll have to wait for the cookbook to come out to get all the recipes, I do want to share the divine recipe for Phirni, an Indian rice pudding, contributed by the amazing Prachi Grover of Orange Kitchens. Prachi’s recipe is delicately flavored with saffron and cardamom – two of my very favorite, enchanting spices!
Share this recipe with your special someone this Valentine’s Day, and see where the enchantment leads!Print
Phirni Rice Pudding
- Yield: 4 + 1x
Indian rice pudding delicately flavored with saffron and cardamom.
- 6 tablespoons white basmati rice, soaked in water to cover for 1 hour
- 4 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon whole milk
- A pinch of saffron
- 3/4 cup sugar (or less if you like less sweetness)
- 1/2 teaspoon green cardamom powder
- 10–12 shelled and sliced or roughly chopped pistachios for garnish
- Drain and grind the rice to a coarse paste in a blender. It’s important to grind the rice very finely, or the pudding won’t properly set. (If you need to add a little water to blend it, go ahead, but only add 1 teaspoon at a time.)
- Meanwhile, in a large pan bring 3 3/4 cup milk to a boil over medium heat. Reserve 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon milk.
- Mix the rice paste in 1/2 cup cold milk to make a loose slurry, and add to the boiling milk. Stir.
- Reduce the heat to low, and cook, stirring constantly, until the rice is completely cooked, and the pudding is thick and creamy, about 10 to 20 minutes.
- Warm the final tablespoon of milk in a small saucepan, and add a pinch of saffron. Stir the saffron mix into the pudding.
- Add the sugar and cardamom powder, and cook, stirring constantly, until the sugar is completely dissolved, a couple of minutes.
- Pour the pudding into individual serving dishes or one large bowl, and allow it to come to room temperature.
- Chill in the refrigerator to set, and just before serving garnish with pistachios. Alternately, garnish with a few strands of saffron, cardamom seeds, or any nut or dried fruit that you like – almonds, cashews, raisins, etc.. For Valentine’s Day, dried rose petals would be gorgeous!