Somethings hold a special place in the heart because of the memories associated with them . This particular dish is one of those things for me .....a very simple but delicious dessert ..this used to be the favorite ..made on all those small celebrations ..... highest marks in a class quiz, getting selected on some team . We used to celebrate all those small victories and accomplishments and phirni used to be a part of it :-) . Though I don't get to make this dessert that often now ....not because of the lack of occasions for celebrations ...but more so because of the wish/need to watch the calorie intake :-(
Someday when I have kids and I will need to celebrate their achievements and successes ..then maybe I will again get a chance to relish this favorite of mine :-)
Since it is served when chilled , summer time is the ideal time to make and relish this dessert. The gulab jal /rose water added also has a cooling effect on the body.
I saw that Rice is the selected ingredient for this month's JFI hosted by Sharmi of Neivedyam a plethora of recipes involving rice ran through my mind. But finally I chose this simple , cooling and sweet dessert as my entry into the event , not to mention that I got to make and eat it with my dear friends not to forget all with the "legitimate reason" of needing an entry for the event ;-)
Phirni / Traditional Indian rice pudding - Serves 6
Rice ( any white rice would do ) - 1/4 cup
Milk - 1 litre
Sugar - 6-7 tb sp. ( as per taste)
Rose water/ Gulab jal - 1 tb sp.
Dry fruits of your choice - as per taste
For this dessert , we need to soak the rice in some water for 1 hour or so and then grind the rice . The rice should be ground a little coarsely and not into a paste .
In the meanwhile , take a thick bottomed pan and heat the milk in it .Once the milk starts to boil , lower the flame and let the milk simmer for 15 -20 mins . Once the quantity has reduced a little add the rice paste into the milk . Add the paste very very slowly and constantly stir the milk as you do so . This step is very important , because if not stirred properly and constantly lumps will form and we do not want that to happen .
Once all the rice has been added to the milk , keep stirring the milk constantly for the next 10 mins . Ensure that the rice does not settle down and stick to the bottom of the pan. While stirring the milk you will notice that the consistency changes and it will have a creamy consistency.
Now , take the pan off the flame and add the sugar . Stir a little so that the sugar dissolves .
Once the contents of the pan are a little cool , add the gulab jal /Rose water and the finely chopped dry fruits .
Keep in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours .
Serve chilled !