Ever since I can remember, every year my mother made this delicious dessert on my birthday. The reason being that out of all the Indian desserts, this one used to be my favorite.Today is my birthday. I was nostalgic, being that my mother is thousands of miles away. I decided to make this dessert for myself:) . Usually kheer is made with rice and milk or vermicelli and milk. I like it best with Sabudana or tapioca pearls which is known as Doodhpak in konkani. This is a traditional konkani dessert. "Doodh" means milk, and "Pak" means thick syrup, in Konkani. This one is a little difficult to make just because it takes a long time to cook sabudana and one has to constantly stir the sabudana(tapioca pearls) while cooking as otherwise it will stick to the bottom of the pot and get burnt very easily. Even a little bit of burnt Sabudana completely ruins the flavor of the dish! Generally kheer is white in color while doodhpak( Sabudana kheer) is made yellow in color by dissolving saffron in warm milk. The recipe is really simple as given below.
Sabudana ( tapioca pearls) : 1/2 cup
Water : 2 1/2 cups
Milk : 1 cup
Sugar : 1/2 cup
Cardamom powder: 1/4tsp
Cashew halves: 1 tbsp
Raisins: 1 tbsp
Saffron: 4 strands
Wash the sabudana until all starch is gone.
Put it in a saucepan with 2 1/2 cups water and bring it to a boil. Once it comes to a boil, reduce the flame to low and let it cook, stirring constantly until the white sabudana(tapioca pearls) turn transparent.
This should take about 30-45 minutes.
Now add sugar to the sabudana and switch off the flame.
Warm milk on stove/ microwave to lukewarm. Take 2 tbsp in a small cup and mix the saffron threads in there. Keep it aside for 10-15 minutes.
Add this milk to the sabudana-sugar mixture.
Now add the freshly powdered cardamom.
Heat ghee in a small frying pan and sauté the cashew halves and raisins until golden brown.
Garnish the Sabudana Kheer with this mixture.
Serve hot or cold. Both taste yummy!
Cooking made easy:
Do not cut onion or garlic on wooden cutting boards. It retains the smell of onion/ garlic. Maintain separate boards to cut onion/ garlic.
Tip for healthy living:
Cardamom is a commonly used spice in Indian desserts . It is known to have significant health benefits especially for the digestive system. It is supposed to help with heartburn, gas, constipation, liver and gall bladder complaints. It helps prevent nausea too. It is also known to be useful during common cold.
Food for thought:
Love is the energy of life. Robert Browning