It was after my husband and I had set up home for a few months, and both sets of parents had settled down with the idea that we were now living on our own, that, for the first time, I found myself in charge! And hungry. So, with my mom a phone call away and armed with online videos, I decided to brush up my cooking skills.
I can cook to make mamma proud, but now that I was on my own, it was a whole new deal. The first few days I struggled, especially with measurements. There were days when we had excess food, which we shared with the genial watchman in our building. Some days the food wasn’t sufficient for the two of us, and we were looking up late-night food delivery services. But I’m a quick learner. There was one mountain I had not scaled yet—Desserts. It was about time.
My brother was visiting and I had a decent menu planned for him. There was loads of leftover milk and I couldn’t think of anything better than kheer, to deal with the excess. To cut a long story short, my brother loved it, so did my husband, my colleagues, and of course, the watchman. Here’s my new bride’s guide to kheer!
My Version of Kheer
One litre milk (I kept 100ml aside to add in case the kheer got too thick)
Two pods of green cinnamon (that my husband crushed to a coarse powder)
½ cup uncooked rice, soaked for 20 mins (I took ¾ cup, which made the kheer grainy)
3 tbsp castor sugar
1 cup chopped nuts- pistachio, cashew nuts and almonds
Once the milk boils over, add the soaked rice and stir till the rice cooks and milk thickens. My kheer, fortunately, turned out to be moderately sweet, with a hint of cardamom flavour.
What I Learnt
To make the kheer creamier, do not scoop out the creamy layer of milk. You can make a slightly caramalised kheer if you condense the milk and sugar longer. Bengalis make Kheer with nolen gur, which is the fresh palm jaggery. However, jaggery can trigger curdling of milk, so add it towards the end.
Chopped almonds and pistachio taste best, but you can experiment with dry fruits and nuts.
And if you’re a rookie with ideas, share it in comments section.
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